Thursday, August 19, 2021

Japan Harnessing Offshore Wind Power

In Koriyama, Japan, overlooking a Mountain Lake, a few hours drive from Tokyo, Dozens of Tall Wind Turbines, spin in the breeze creating Carbon-Free Power, for One of the World's Biggest Emitters of Greenhouse Gases.

A sudden change in breeze spins the Turbines in a different direction, an apt symbol of Japan's efforts to Shift away from Fossil Fuels for Renewable Energy like Wind Power, to help cut its Greenhouse Gas Emissions under the Kyoto Protocol.

Wind Farms, like the Nunobiki Plateau Wind Farm on a Hill North of Tokyo, which generates enough Electricity to Power some 35,000 Homes a year, have Failed to make a Dent in Japan's Obligations to Cut Carbon Gas Emissions under the Kyoto Protocol. But Japan is now looking towards the Sea, following in the footsteps of Europe, which is the World's Leader in Wind Energy, by Planning a Network of Offshore Wind Farms to tap into the Gales of the Pacific Ocean.


Japan's Offshore Renewable Energy Act of 2018, created a Framework for Offshore Wind, and under a 2020 Government Plan, it aims to produce as many as 45 gigawatts of Power through Offshore Wind turbines, equivalent to the Output of 45 Nuclear Reactors, by 2040. That would be an Enormous Leap for the Country, which had only 200,000 kilowatts of Offshore Wind Power as the end of 2020. It would make Japan the 3rd in Offshore Wind Power Worldwide, behind the EU and China.

In 2020, Japan launched its first tenders for Floating Wind Farms, with Southern Prefecture of Nagasaki, home to nearly 600 islands, chosen as Host. The small Project was followed by larger, fixed-botton farms, in the perfectures of Akita and Chiba, North and East of Tokyo, respectively.

Japan is one of the world's most attractive future offshore wind markets for several reasons, says Gunnar Herzing, Managing Director at World Forum Offshore Wind, a Nonprofit Group founded in 2018. First, its island location provides a perfect setting for offshore wind energy. Second, Japan's solid regulatory frsmework for offshore wind energy provides certainty and stability to international developers and investors. Third, Japan's strong industrial backbone and its large financial institutions will enable the country to build a powerful domestic offshore wind industry, creating well-paid local offshore wind jobs.

Turbine Maker, Toshiba Eneergy Systems and Solutions, is aiming to Triple its Renewable Energy Business Sales bt 2030 through Technologies such as Wind Power. Aiming for a piece of the Offshore action in Japan, it's now preparing to produce Components for the World's most Powerful Wind Turbine, the Haliade-X, developed by GE Renewable Energy, the 12-Megawatt Offshore Turbine is an Engineering Marvel: 248 meters tall, as high as an 85-story Building, with a Roto diameter of 220 meters, and a Nacelle as big as a House, a single turbine can meet the Electricity needs of upto 16,000 Households.

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