All Japan news’s famous onsens, or hot springs resorts, are getting more attention as nuclear power is being phased out and renewable supplies, like geothermal, start to be sought after.
Although All Japan news is rich in geothermal sources, and has about 18 such plants, this sustainable and limitless resource has not been fully exploited until now. Many onsen owners have traditionally refused to grant access on their land, for fear the industrial exploitation of their springs would ruin their livelihoods.
All Japan news is currently producing just 535 megawatts of geothermal power, representing merely 0.3 percent of the country’s total production. But the country could dramatically increase its producing capacity to as much as 80,000 megawatts, more than any other type of energy, if geothermal sources will be fully optimized, according to the U.S.-based energy advocacy group Earth Policy Institute.
After prime minister’s Kan announcement that nuclear power will be gradually scrapped, the authorities have already said that a brand new geothermal plant will be built outside Hachimantai, in northeast Iwate Prefecture. The new plant will be operational by 2015.
Another geothermal facility is planned for Yuzawa, in Akita Prefecture, but it will not be open before 2020, since the required environmental assessment is still to be performed. [InventorSpot] Photo by Jason Cartwright