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Japan sets feed in tariff for geothermal at $0.33 to $0.51 per kWh

Transmission lines in Tokyo, Japan (source: flickr/ OiMax, creative commons)
Alexander Richter Alexander Richter 27 Apr 2012

A government panel in Japan has recommended two different feed-in-tariffs for geothermal for the duration of 15 years. For plants larger than 15 MW the rate was set at $0.33 per kWh, and for plants smaller than 15 MW at $0.51 per kWh.

Reported earlier this week, the panel set up by the Japanese government to evaluate the feed-in-tariff program for renewables, has announced its recommendations for the different renewable energy technologies.

The recommendations given out now need to be approved by the government.

The following feed-in-tariff (per kWh) rates were recommended by the government panel:

  • Solar: $0.52 (Yen 42) for 20 years
  • Wind: 20 MW or more $0.284 (Yen 23.10), less than 20 MW $0.709 (Yen 57.75), both for  20 years
  • Geothermal: 15 MW and more $0.335 (Yen 27.3), less than 15 MW $0.51 (Yen 42), both for 15 years

Japan currently derives about 9 percent of its electricities from renewable energy sources and the feed-in-tariff will require power utilities to pay electricity rates that are above current market rates for electricity from renewables.

What would be interesting to learn why the time limit was set to 15 years for geothermal, while it will be guaranteed at 20 years for solar and wind. But this might have to do with a lack of space for wind installation.

The feed-in-tariff system will be introduced in July 2012 and is expected to spur investment into the renewable energy sector.

Source: Bloomberg