This policy brief examines how Germany and Japan are addressing questions of how to move away from both fossil and nuclear energy at the same time. The report identifies lessons relevant for the large-scale deployment of renewable energy in the United States, even given that a move away from nuclear is not part of U.S. policy.
Major Energy Economies: Japan
Transforming the Electricity Portfolio: Lessons from Germany and Japan in Deploying Renewable Energy
Comparing Photovoltaic (PV) Costs and Deployment Drivers in the Japanese and U.S. Residential and Commercial Markets
This joint lab report investigates Japan’s solar PV market trends and compares its findings with trends in the U.S. solar PV market. Data were collected from more than 80 Japanese PV installers to estimate PV system costs, namely hardware costs, soft costs, and installed system prices for residential and small commercial. The report finds that Japan’s residential PV systems cost 6 percent compared to U.S. systems, and small commercial PV systems cost 20 percent less. Additionally, Japan’s higher hardware costs cause its soft costs to account for a considerably smaller proportion of system prices compared to the U.S.
This paper was written at the request of the government of Japan to describe best practices in renewable energy policy design, using numerous international case studies as examples. It evaluates Japan’s status with respect to these policies and makes recommendations, including: update Japan’s transmission system, reduce the power of utility monopolies, implement policies to support biomass and geothermal, and strengthen clean energy R&D.