Japan’s power market will get a boost from a recent law change that elevates the status of storage batteries connected to the grid to a power generation business.
This could spur major change to the power system, both in terms of the technical potential and for business models. More battery installations should allow for a better balancing of the rising electricity volume from variable energy sources such as solar and wind. It also should breathe life into several subcategories of the electricity market, as battery operators seek ways to turn a profit.
The law change has led to a wave of domestic and foreign company interest in battery projects in Japan. And by far the most popular location so far is Hokkaido, the country’s northernmost isle.
Hokkaido served as the vanguard of Japan’s renewables revolution a decade ago. Now the island’s unique geography and role in the national energy system is providing interesting findings for Japan’s battery pioneers.