Paul Thomen

Thursday, 22 August 2013

Asia-Pacific Renewable Energy Market Policy Instruments Handbook 2013

The report Asia-Pacific Renewable Energy Policy Handbook 2013 by Global Data is now available at Contact with report name in subject line and your contact details to purchase this report or get your questions answered.

Burgeoning energy demand, limited reserves of fossil fuel, and concerns over global warming have forced countries in the Asia-Pacific to increase the share of renewable energy in their energy mix. The region has made significant investments in renewable energy projects in recent years and this is expected to continue in the coming decades. Many countries have adopted policy instruments such as Feed-In Tariffs (FITs), Renewable Portfolio Standards (RPS), soft loans and tax incentives to promote renewable energy. Most of the measures initiated by governments have received a positive response and have played a vital role in the development of the renewable energy industry.

Investment in renewable energy projects gained pace after the Kyoto Protocol was introduced in 1997. This protocol sets binding obligations on industrialized countries to reduce greenhouse gases emissions below 5% of 1990 levels by 2012 (the first commitment period) and below 18% of 1990 levels by 2020 (the second commitment period).

Australia, Japan and New Zealand have signed the Kyoto Protocol, thereby reducing carbon emissions. India and China, as participants in the Copenhagen Accord in 2009 pledged to carry out a domestically binding target to reduce their carbon intensity by 20–25% and 40–45% below 2005 levels respectively by 2020.

China is fast becoming one of the major players in the global renewable energy industry. In recent years, China has developed its wind turbine and solar Photovoltaic (PV) manufacturing industries. The government has shown commitment to renewable energy through a series of new laws and financial support measures.

India and Australia have also implemented a number of support measures for the development of renewable energy, of which the pace of implementation will determine future growth. The new programs related to solar power development announced in India are expected to significantly increase the share of solar power in the renewable energy portfolio.

The Japanese government has shown commitment to renewables through the introduction of a FIT for renewable energy in 2012. It also announced plans to entirely rebuild its energy policy following the Fukushima nuclear disaster in March 2011. The policy now suggests gradually reducing dependence on nuclear power while enhancing the share of renewable energy and efficient fossil-fuel power generation.

Thailand has announced a number of measures to boost its renewable industry. The country aims to use 25% renewable energy in the next 10 years instead of fossil fuels.

China Led the Renewable Energy Industry in the Asia-Pacific Region in 2012

China has emerged as one of the major players in the global renewable energy industry and is leading the industry in the Asia-Pacific region.

In 2011, the government announced plans in its 12th five-year plan (2011–2015) to promote the development of new energy industries. It set ambitious targets for renewable energy, including 70 Gigawatt (GW) of wind power capacity, 20 GW of solar power and 7.5 GW of biomass power by 2015, generating about 11.3% of the country’s electricity through renewable sources by 2015 and 15% by 2020.

China has become the largest wind power market in the world with a total installed capacity of 75,564 Megawatt (MW) in 2012, overtaking the US in 2011. The growth in the wind power market over the last couple of years has been due to new installations, which included a record 13.8 GW addition of wind capacity in 2009 and a further 18.9 GW in 2010. China is also trying to establish itself as a major player in the solar power industry, and the government has announced major support measures such as the Golden Sun Program, Building Integrated PV (BIPV) subsidy program, and FITs for solar projects. The government has also initiated various measures to promote small hydro and biomass facilities. These moves are expected to promote renewable energy development in China and increase investment in the sector.

Major Countries at a Glance Supporting Renewable Energy Growth in Asia-Pacific Region

Wind and Solar Power Set to Boost the Growth of Renewable in Australia

Australia’s cumulative installed capacity for renewable power surged from 849 MW in 2001 to 5,968 MW in 2012. The cumulative share of solar and wind power was around 80% in the country’s total renewable power capacity in 2012, growing at a Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 41% during the 2001–2012 period.

The solar PV market in Australia has grown in recent years, largely due to policy support from the government. The majority of solar installations have been benefited by the government grant program, the Solar Homes and Communities Plan. Now this plan has been replaced by another program, the Solar Credits scheme. The new program has great potential for building a huge distributed clean energy production network.

Presently, wind power prevails over other renewable electricity generation in Australia. The introduction of a Mandatory Renewable Energy Target (MRET) helped the wind power market’s development from 2001 to 2006. After 2006, a Large-Scale Renewable Energy Target (LRET) and Small-Scale Renewable Energy Scheme (SRES) provided greater thrust to large-scale and small-scale wind developers.

India to Witness Significant Investment in Solar Energy over the Next Decade

The Indian government has planned significant investment in the solar power industry with the launch of Jawaharlal Nehru National Solar Mission (JNNSM) in 2010. The JNNSM aims to develop and deploy solar energy technologies in the country to achieve parity with the grid power tariff by 2022. The mission supports the creation of an enabling policy framework to deploy 20,000 MW of solar power by 2022. Furthermore, it aims to increase the capacity of grid-connected solar power generation to 1,000 MW by 2013 and 3,000 MW by 2017, through mandatory use of renewables by utility providers.

Japan’s Feed-in Tariff will Position it as the Next Large-Growth Market

The Fukushima incident in Japan in 2011 had a worldwide impact. Since then, Japan has moved towards diversifying its energy mix and reducing the share of nuclear power in its overall energy mix.

The government’s introduction of one of the world’s best FIT rates (in the range of $0.24–0.40/kWh) for renewable energy in 2012 is a significant step towards promoting renewable electricity generation. The FITs is expected to boost the development of solar, wind and geothermal projects in the country by mandating utility providers to purchase power from renewable energy sources at a rate fixed by the government.

Renewable Portfolio Standards to Stimulate Renewable Energy Growth in South Korea

The FIT program that began in 2001 triggered the initial growth of renewable energy sources, mainly wind and solar PV, in South Korea. In 2012, the South Korean government adopted the RPS. The government seeks to relieve its financial burden with the change in its policy regime to replace the FIT program with RPS. Under the RPS scheme, power generators are obligated to supply a certain percentage of their electricity generation through renewable energy sources. The RPS mandate includes 10% contribution from renewables in the overall energy mix by 2022.

Thailand Aims to Increase Renewable Energy Generation

Thailand’s renewable power installed capacity grew from 477 MW in 2001 to 2,600 MW in 2012. Biomass power accounted for around 75% of the total renewable capacity in 2012. The biomass power is likely to drive the renewable energy development in the future, since agriculture is widespread in Thailand and agricultural waste is expected to be a major source of power generation from biomass technology. Moreover, the share of solar and wind power is also expected to grow in the total renewable power mix.

The growth of renewable energy in the country seems optimistic with the support from Thai Board of Investment (BOI). The BOI announced its support in alternative energy investment as a result of findings showing an increase in demand for energy by 39% in the next nine years. Thailand’s government under the Alternative Energy Development Plan (AEDP) 2012–2021 plans to use 25% renewable energy instead of fossil fuels within the next 10 years (DEDE, 2012a).

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