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ECONOMY > Energy

A German-inspired small-scale communal business manages renewable energy

  • September 7, 2017
  • , Asahi , p. 7
  • JMH Translation

A press conference was held on September 6th announcing the establishment of a new organization that partners with local governments across Japan to address regional challenges by leveraging energy businesses with the aim of improving local economies and social services by way of promoting local production of renewable energy, such as solar and wind, for local consumption.

 

The organization is called Japan Stadtwerke (SW) Network. A SW is a public corporation financially maintained by German regional governments to manage power retailing and distribution networks. The communal business entity employs locals and spends its revenue on improving social infrastructure such as transportation.

 

Using Germany as a model, the newly established network will help local governments start up power producers and suppliers, facilitate exchange of information on innovative projects, and make policy proposals. As of September 6, 21 regional governments and 17 corporations have joined the network including Tokorozawa, Saitama Prefecture, Okazaki, Aichi Prefecture, Shimokawacho, Hokkaido Prefecture, Higashimatsushima, Miyagi Prefecture, Yonago, Tottori Prefecture, and Miyama, Fukuoka Prefecture.

 

“We want to establish a sustainable system, not just a fad as momentary as a firework,” says Professor Raupach Sumiya Jorg of Ritsumeikan University, who represents the organization.

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