Article published on cleantechnica.com, on April 16th 2015
A 231 MW solar power plant will be built in Setouchi City, Japan, in an area that was previously used as a salt field. Trina Solar will supply 116 MW of solar modules for the huge Japanese project, which is expected to be up and running by 2019.
“We believe that demand for clean and sustainable energy in Japan will continue to increase and that solar energy will play a key role in the growing diversification of the country’s energy mix. Japan is a key market for us where we expect to further deepen our penetration,” saidZhiguo Zhu, COO.
Toyo Engineering will build the new solar plant, which is expected to cost about $1.1 billion, backed by Mizuho Bank, Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ, and Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation.
Setouchi City is in Okayama Prefecture, which is located in southern Japan, and has a population of about 40,000 out of the entire prefecture’s 2 million residents. Fishing and agriculture are the top two industries in Setouchi, which is not surprising as it has a port that used to be very well known.
It has been written that something good did result from the Fukushima nuclear disaster: it woke up the Japanese public to the dangers presented by old nuclear reactors, “The atmosphere today,” says Setouchi, “is exactly like 1941, ’42.” Back then, the public and mass media bought the official line that Japan’s victory was assured. In our own time, the public and mass media bought the official line that the safety of nuclear power was assured.” The Setouchi quoted here is a Buddhist nun and author. She protested the nuclear industry along with thousands of Japanese citizens.
Fukushima sparked a greater interest and commitment to renewable energy in Japan, and then in Germany as well, as there are a number of old nuclear reactors with potentialproblems there too.