Japan to Support Energy Saving, Storage-Battery Installations

Japan’s Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry plans to set aside about 93 billion yen ($779 million) to help factories and small-sized businesses install devices to improve energy efficiency.

The ministry is asking for the budget to set up devices such as light-emitting diode lamps and boilers with better efficiency, according to a summary of requests included as part of a supplementary budget for the year ending March 31. It will be considered by cabinet today.

METI also plans to spend about 81 billion yen in response to grid issues the country is facing in order to accommodate more renewable energy.

The ministry wants to help set up energy storage systems at solar power stations or substations. Parts of the budget will also be spent to help clean energy producers in the region hit by the 2011 Fukushima earthquake and tsunami buy equipment, according to the document. The budget needs parliament’s approval.

Solar comprises the majority of Japan’s clean-energy installations since the introduction of an incentive program for clean energy in July 2012. Some utilities began announcing last year that their grid capacity is nearing its maximum to absorb intermittent solar power.

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