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Japan subsidizes solar power industry

Scott Tong Jul 2, 2012
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Japan subsidizes solar power industry

Scott Tong Jul 2, 2012
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Jeff Horwich: Attention U.S. solar industry: Japan is now open for business. The government just launched billions in subsidies to promote solar energy.

From the Marketplace sustainability desk, here’s Scott Tong.


Scott Tong: It’s like Walmart the day after Thanksgiving: The Japan solar rush is on. Tokyo’s new subsidy pays homeowners and companies a high price for generating and selling solar energy. The program lasts 20 years.

How high a price? Double what the Germans pay, triple the Chinese price. Nathanial Bullard is with Bloomberg New Energy Finance.

Nathaniel Bullard: With the Japanese market offering such generous terms right now, it’s the potential for a real boom.

He thinks Japan’s market could leapfrog Italy for second largest in the world behind China. For consumers, a big new market stirs innovation for the world. Bullard thinks in a decade, we’ll build entire electricity systems from renewable sources. No grid.

Bullard: The question will be, not where do I connect to a conventional grid of the sort that you find in the United States and Europe, but rather, do I connect at all?

For now, solar companies from Germany and China compete with domestic firms in Japan. But the Americans will follow into the booming market. Land of the rising … you know.

I’m Scott Tong for Marketplace.

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