Japan to Review Clean Energy Incentive Program After Solar Surge

Japan’s Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry will review the country’s incentive program for promoting use of renewable energy to tackle issues such as project delays and the dominance of solar power over other energy sources.

The ministry will set up a taskforce to look at several aspects of the incentive program, including the increase in fees paid by consumers for renewable energy, Yasuhiro Matsuyama, the official in charge of the program, said by phone Friday.

The taskforce meetings have yet to begin so other details of the review haven’t been worked out, he said. Japan introduced a renewable energy incentive program in July 2012 after the Fukushima nuclear disaster, offering some of the highest rates for solar-produced electricity in the world.

Japan convened a series of meetings of experts starting last year to discuss clean energy policies. The review by the ministry taskforce follows approval of a long-term energy mix plan earlier this month that said renewable energy should make up as much as 24 percent of power generation by 2030.

The country has approved 78,680 megawatts of clean energy projects with solar accounting for 95 percent of the total as of the end of February, according to trade ministry data.

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