REGULATION | Staff Reporter, Japan

Kyushu Electric curbs solar power supplies for the first time

It is trying to maintain grid stability.

Reuters reports that Kyushu Electric Power Co said it restricted its third-party solar power supplies over the weekend. This is the first time a Japanese utilities company has limited the use of renewable energy to avoid blackouts.

Even after the Fukushima nuclear disaster that prompted the growth of renewables, the government had started to allow old utilities in 2015 to restrict supplies of renewable energy in order to maintain grid stability.

Kyushu Electric had indicated that the restart of a fourth nuclear reactor could lead to possible restrictions on the purchase of renewable energy.

The curtailment can be made at short notice and without having to pay compensation, however, the restrictions can only be made after first curbing hydro and fossil fuel power output or transferring excess supplies to other regions.

Kyushu had 8.07GW of solar capacity connected to the grid at end-August, not far behind the 8.2GW that a government committee estimated in 2016 would be the maximum the utility could take without curtailment.

Read the full report here

Photo by Muyo, CC BY-SA 3.0

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