Thursday, August 24th, 2017

Like shale oil, solar power is shaking up global energy

By Henning Gloystein and Aaron Sheldrick SINGAPORE/TOKYO (Reuters) – One by one, Japan is turning off the lights at the giant oil-fired power plants that propelled it to the ranks of the world’s top industrialized nations. With nuclear power in the doldrums after the Fukushima disaster, it’s solar energy that is becoming the alternative. Solar power is set to become profitable in Japan as early as this quarter, according to the Japan Renewable Energy Foundation (JREF), freeing it from the need for government subsidies and making it the last of the G7 economies where the technology has become economically viable. Japan is now one of the world’s four largest markets for solar panels and a large number of power plants are coming onstream, including two giant arrays over water in Kato City and a $1.1 billion solar farm being built on a salt field in Okayama, both west of Osaka.


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