Japan’s wind industry aims to provide a third of the country’s power by 2050

The JWPA said Japan should increase its offshore wind power generation capacity to 100GW by 2050 to help reduce emissions. - Photo from Straits Times/ANN

TOKYO, May 30 (Reuters): Japan’s wind power body has set a mid-century goal to increase capacity to 140 gigawatts (GW), from less than 5GW now, it said on Monday, to meet a third of the country’s electricity demand and help it to hit its 2050 carbon neutrality target.

Offshore wind is meant to be central to Japan’s expansion of renewable energy, but progress has been delayed, and a government goal of up to 45GW of offshore wind power in 2040 looks less ambitious than the new Japan Wind Power Association (JWPA) targets.

“We need to map out a clear goal to attract foreign suppliers of wind farms so that they would invest in Japan and build local supply chains here,” JWPA president Jin Kato told a news conference.

The JWPA said Japan, the world’s fifth-biggest carbon dioxide emitter, should increase its offshore wind power generation capacity to 100GW by 2050 to help reduce emissions.

As at end-2022, Japan’s less than 5GW of installed wind power capacity included only 0.14GW offshore.

The government in 2022 had to suspend the process of selecting developers for windfarm projects for nine months while it revised bidding rules to address business criticism that they lacked clarity.

The JWPA said creating an internationally competitive wind power industry required collaboration between the public and private sectors to speed up progress.

In all, it aims to install 40GW of onshore wind farms, 40GW of bottom-fixed offshore wind farms and 60GW of floating offshore, it said.

The installations would have an economic ripple effect of 6 trillion yen (S$57.9 billion) per year in 2050, creating 355,000 jobs while reducing fossil fuel procurement costs by 2.5 trillion yen per year, JWPA estimates found. - Reuters

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