Japanese companies forced to subsidize national solar power program

Mon, 09/28/2009 - 7:52am
by Jason Lomberg, Technical Editor

EZ header Microchip 

Jason-125Japanese companies are being forced to foot the bill for an ambitious new national solar power program.  According to Alpha Solar, “the government will oblige all Japanese companies to purchase excessive amount of energy and pay the double price to help installing solar panels.” The total “obligation” equals 9 billion Yen, and this will filter down to the consumer.

By April 2010, consumers will pay twice as much for electricity. According to dictate, Japanese households (having less that 10 kW capacity) will pay 30 Yen/month more (about $0.33), soon to be raised to 90/Yen month. Altogether, this extra income will reduce the expenses on solar panel installation, and purportedly “increase their output of solar energy 40-fold by the year 2030.”

On multiple occassions, ECN has asked you, it’s readers, whether government should subsidize development of alternative energy. This Japanese program takes it a step further—not only are they developing solar power, but they’re passing the costs on to the private sector. Is this a bad portend for the US? Please discuss in the comments.

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