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SoftBank to Review Solar Projects in Hokkaido, Kyodo Reports

SoftBank Corp. will review solar projects it’s planning for Japan’s northernmost island because Hokkaido Electric Power Co. hasn’t approved applications for power sales, Kyodo News agency reported today.

SoftBank may even consider halting plans for three solar stations, two in Abira Town and one in Yakumo, Kyodo said. The three plants were to have a combined capacity of more than 180 megawatts, the agency reported, citing unidentified officials.

The company is considering what to do in the future, Kenichi Yuasa, a spokesman, said by phone today, adding that SoftBank isn’t the source of the Kyodo report. SoftBank has announced two projects in Hokkaido, a 110-megawatt plant in Abira and a 2.7 megawatt station in Shiraoi, the spokesman said.

Hokkaido, with its availability of cheap land, has drawn more applications for solar projects than its grid can handle after Japan began an incentive program for clean energy in July.

Hokkaido Electric has said that it may become difficult to provide grid connections once connected capacity for solar plants 2 megawatts or larger reaches about 400 megawatts, according to a company statement on April 17.

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