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Japan Adds 1,178 Megawatts of Mostly Solar Energy in Nine Months

March 15 (Bloomberg) -- Japan added 1,178 megawatts of mostly solar clean-energy capacity in the nine months to the end of December as the country curbs its reliance on nuclear power.

Japan added 1,119 megawatts of solar to the 4,800 megawatts already installed, according to data released by the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry on March 13. Wind rose 34 megawatts and biomass 22 megawatts, according to the government figures.

The country began an incentive program for clean energy in July to boost use of renewables after the 2011 Fukushima atomic disaster. The ministry approved applications for above-market rates for clean energy worth 5,236 megawatts until the end of December, including 3,857 megawatts of non-residential solar.

The northern island of Hokkaido accounts for 26 percent of approved applications by capacity for solar plants 1 megawatt or larger, the most among Japan’s 47 prefectures, the data showed.

To contact the reporter on this story: Chisaki Watanabe in Tokyo at +81-3-3201-2541 or cwatanabe5@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Reed Landberg at +44-20-7330-7862 or landberg@bloomberg.net

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