Japan

Applied Materials

Japanese Solar Market Poised to Surge

Last year, the Japanese government announced the creation of a national feed-in tariff (FiT) for solar, joining Germany and China in creating robust public policy to drive deployment of renewable energy. The program is set to launch on July 1, 2012 and solar is regarded as one of the brightest spots in the Japanese recovery from the tsunami.The new program will guarantee payment of 40 Yen/kWh ($0.50) for solar energy produced by projects >10kw (non-residential) and 42 Yen/kWh ($0.53) for energy from projects <10kw (residential) for twenty and ten years, respectively. Today, installed system prices in Japan far exceed global norms – 2011 system costs averaged ~$6.25/w reflecting a high cost of regulation, grid connection, land, labor and construction costs in Japan as well as a module supply largely dominated by higher priced domestic manufacturers. Solar panel prices in 2011 ranged from 150-200Yen/watt ($1.90-2.70/w) which is almost twice what installers in the U.S. pay.
Applied Materials

Solar Industry Delivering on Economic Growth

Everyone in Washington is scrambling to understand how we jumpstart our economy and deliver long term economic growth – especially in the midst of rising oil prices which threaten our fragile economic recovery. One ray of sunshine – solar. Last week, before the House Energy and Commerce Committee, Subcommittee on Commerce, Manufacturing and Trade, the President of the Solar Industry Association, Rhone Resch, delivered some good news on solar’s role in spurring economic growth. The US solar industry grew from $3.6 billion in 2009 to $6.0 billion in 2010, a growth rate of 67%. Today, there are over 100,000 American citizens employed by the solar industry – the industry is a robust, fully functioning ecosystem.
Volunteering to Keep an Icon Clean and Green

Volunteering to Keep an Icon Clean and Green

I have had the opportunity to do lots of volunteer work over the years in cities across the U.S. – gleaning food for distribution to families in need, weeding community gardens, painting houses for the elderly and low income, being a classroom mentor, as well as serving on boards of nonprofit organizations. Every activity has been a great personal experience that helped shape my leadership skills, allowed me to think about social problems in new ways, and create perspective on what's important in life.
Japanese Government Increases Solar PV Support

Japanese Government Increases Solar PV Support

The Japanese government has a long history of promoting new energy sources – from supporting research and development, to creating programs that drive adoption. Early last year, the Japanese government unveiled its action plan for achieving a low-carbon society: with its largest-ever economic stimulus program – dedicating $55 billion over the next 5 years. The plan, which includes a huge boost for solar photovoltaic (PV) systems, is aimed at making Japan a global leader in the development and implementation of core clean energy technologies like solar energy and electric cars.