These alternative energy sources produce little carbon dioxide, while helping create new businesses at low cost and without importing natural resources.
The central government has accelerated the development of all-domestic new energy sources by introducing new goals and subsidy systems in rapid succession.
The government aims to double the nation's electricity-generating capacity by 2020, using new energy sources including biomass, small-scale hydroelectric power generation and geothermal power, and to increase capacity three times or more by 2030.
The government's major focus is on solar power. Advocating the "world's best sunlight plan," with the aim of increasing solar panel-derived electricity generation by 20 times by 2020 compared to 2005 levels, the government has introduced a variety of support measures.
About 45,000 households have applied for installation subsidies to install solar panels since the government introduced them in January. The government's installation subsidy per household ranges from 210,000 yen to 250,000 yen. Each local government also offers its own subsidies that can be used in combination with the national subsidies.