Small and Micro-Scale Hydropower in Japan: Potential, Incentives and Regulation

Abstract : Although Japan has abundant water resources, small and micro-scale hydropower which, according to surveys, potential is high, did not benefit much (compared to solar PV) from the Feed-in-Tariff scheme implemented in 2012 to more effectively support renewable energies. In a country whose energy self-sufficiency has always been low and is even lower since the Fukushima accident, it may seem somewhat surprising. Based on available surveys, literature on renewables, some interviews with smart communities' local authorities or researchers in Japan, this paper aims at discussing what the main issues relevant to explain this paradox are. It argues that reaching the government estimates towards 2050 will probably need more actions, incentives but more over a simplification of regulations, especially those on water management, which complexity is a major break to local promoters to engage in small and micro-scale hydropower projects, while local production/local consumption probably is one of the main issues for further development.
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Yveline Lecler. Small and Micro-Scale Hydropower in Japan: Potential, Incentives and Regulation. Daniele Brombal. Proceedings of the XV East Asia Net Research Workshop (Studi e ricerche 12) , Edizioni Ca' Foscari, pp.31-63, 2017, Studi e ricerche, 978-88-6969-210-9. ⟨10.14277/978-88-6969-190-4/SR-12 ⟩. ⟨http://edizionicafoscari.unive.it/it/edizioni/libri/978-88-6969-210-9/⟩. ⟨halshs-01803429⟩

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