The Renewable Outlook in Japan

Japanese interest in renewable energy sources is on the rise. A major reason is the popular desire to get away from nuclear power in the post-3/11 age, but moves to diversify Japan’s energy mix were underway even before the disaster. In this series we take a look at the renewable picture in Japan today.

Offshore Wind Power Promises to Boost Fukushima Recovery

In November 2013, a 2,000-kilowatt wind turbine off the coast of Fukushima Prefecture began trial operations. Two more turbines of 7,000 kilowatts each will be installed this year, creating the world’s largest floating offshore wind farm. The project is an important part of the prefecture’s effort to revive its economy following the March 11, 2011, earthquake and tsunami.

Hopeful Signs: Renewable Energy from Geothermal and Solar Power

In the wake of 3/11, people are looking increasingly to renewables to provide their electricity. While solar power had been popular even before the disaster, geothermal energy has not reached even a small fraction of its potential. We examine the reasons for this development gap.

Building a Floating Wind Farm Off the Fukushima Coast

After being devastated by the Tōhoku earthquake and nuclear disaster last March, Fukushima Prefecture is now looking to renewable energy as a new area of industrial development. Tests of the world’s first large-scale offshore floating wind farm are underway, and hopes are high.

Rice Paddy Power: Harnessing Microbial Energy

Energy harvesting transforms the latent energy of the natural world that flows through our everyday environment into power we can use. In the fields that produce Japan’s staple crop, rice, work to harvest this energy has already begun.

The Promise of Kinetic Power Generation

Technology to collect energy from our everyday world is gaining attention. “Energy harvesting” technology can turn a crowded floor or a remote control into a tool for producing power. The technology holds a wealth of possibilities.

Five Things to Know About Energy in Japan

Basic information about Japan’s energy situation is indispensable when examining the prospects for renewable energy sources here. We kick off our series with a quiz to see what you know about things like Japan’s energy self-sufficiency ratio and the price of gas.

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