Renewable-related Trade Show Features Self-consumption, Output Control Methods

2019/10/31 19:55
Kenji Kaneko, Nikkei BP Intelligence Group, CleanTech Labo
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"Fukushima Renewable Energy Industrial Fair (REIF Fukushima 2019)" took place Oct 30 and 31, 2019, at an exhibition site in Koriyama City, Fukushima Prefecture, Japan.

It is one of the largest renewable energy-related local trade shows in Japan. This is the eighth time that the event has been organized, and the largest number of companies/organizations (216) exhibited their services/products at the show.

In the opening seminar of the event, Takuya Yamazaki, director of New and Renewable Energy Division, Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Department, Agency for Natural Resources and Energy, Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI), delivered a speech.

"The environment surrounding renewable energy has drastically changed in the past several years, and each country is strongly promoting the use of renewable energy through cost reduction," he said. "I believe that this trend is irreversible. The ratio of renewable energy has increased to 16% in Japan, but it is halfway to the goal of 24%. We will continue to powerfully promote renewable energy, aiming to make it a main power source."

In regard to exhibits related to solar power generation, there were many proposals on systems that support "output control" of commercial solar power plants, which might start to be implemented in the service area of Tohoku-Electric Power Co Inc in 2020, in addition to self-consumption systems, which will be supported by government policies.

As for self-consumption systems, Looop Inc (Taito-ku, Tokyo) announced a product called "My Self-consumption Set" and an estimate that it is possible to recoup investment in five years at the earliest by combining (1) the installation/self-consumption of rooftop solar power plants for businesses and (2) its services of supplying electricity and purchasing surplus electricity.

Also, Xsol Co Ltd (Kyoto City) claimed that it is possible to cut electricity costs through peak-shaving adjustments by adding a storage battery and demand management system to corporate self-consumption-type solar power plants.

The output control of renewable energy-based power plants, which already started in the service area of Kyushu Electric Power Co Inc, is likely to be implemented also in the service areas of Shikoku Electric Power Co Inc, The Chugoku Electric Power Co Inc and Tohoku-Electric Power in 2020. So, there is an urgent need to make improvements to commercial solar power generation facilities in those areas by, for example, adding a remote control system.