Renova Inc., a developer of renewable energy, is not only expanding its solar power capacity, but it’s also looking to geothermal and beyond.
The Tokyo-based venture is targeting an expansion of its solar power capacity to more than 300 megawatts, according to Bloomberg.
“Our immediate focus is to bring online our pipeline for mega-solar,” Yukiyoshi Tomita, a senior manager at Renova’s corporate planning office, says in an interview in Tokyo. “We also want to secure wind and biomass capacity followed by geothermal.”
Renova started as a waste-recycling business in 2000. It now has about 190 megawatts of solar operating or under construction, capitalizing on an incentive program for clean energy that started four years ago in Japan.
Now Tomito tells Bloomberg, the development of large solar projects is becoming increasingly difficult. “Many available sites are being left because of the costs associated with preparing the land,” while solar-power rates are also falling, he said. “That sets a higher hurdle.”
That’s convinced Renova to differentiate. It’s building a 20-megawatt biomass power station in the northern prefecture of Akita, which is slated to start in July, according to Bloomberg. The company is looking at developing geothermal power projects in Hokkaido and Kumamoto prefectures, according to Tomita, who also tells Bloomberg that wind projects are being considered.
So why do builders care? While Renova is a Japanese company that focuses on commercial projects, it is facing similar constraints and concerns as American residential renewable energy ventures.
Renova is also proving that technologies such as geothermal are starting to get the attention of big players in the renewables industry.
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