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Chisaki Watanabe
For Chisaki Watanabe's latest contributions to The Japan Times, see below:
Japan Times
BUSINESS / Companies / FOCUS
Apr 6, 2016
Takeover of Sharp advances Hon Hai's clean-energy ambitions
Hon Hai Precision Industry Co.'s rescue of Sharp Corp. promises to bolster the Taiwanese electronics maker's ambitions for a bigger role in clean energy in some of the world's most polluting countries while also providing a firmer footing in Japan.
Japan Times
BUSINESS
Mar 23, 2016
Rooftop solar booms in Japan as market moves beyond utilities
Japan's home rooftops are emerging as the next hot spot in what for years has been one of the biggest solar markets in the world, marking a move beyond the utility-scale projects in rich industrial nations that have fueled most of the industry's growth.
Japan Times
JAPAN / Science & Health
Mar 1, 2016
Japan pushes ahead with Hokkaido carbon capture test despite quake concerns
Japan is preparing to test its biggest project yet for capturing and storing greenhouse gas pollution under the seabed despite concerns about cost and the safety of pursuing the technology in a region prone to earthquakes.
Japan Times
BUSINESS
Feb 4, 2016
Japan's power producers scour forests in search of wood to burn
With almost 70 percent of its land covered by forests, Japan is leading a drive to return to wood as a source of cleaner energy.
Japan Times
JAPAN
Nov 12, 2015
Japan pushes clean-coal technology; hurdles abound
For all the talk of a solar boom in Japan, coal still has a future, and potentially a big one at that. Japan's government and industry are backing emerging coal technologies they say are less damaging to the environment. While they are pushing the most polluting fossil fuel at home and abroad, the government will be trying to burnish its environmental credentials at climate talks that begin at the end of the month in Paris.
Japan Times
JAPAN
Jul 22, 2015
Japan's 2030 climate goals will clash with planned investments in coal
With countries from China to Brazil lining up to showcase efforts to rein in pollution that causes global warming, developers of coal power plants in Japan may find themselves increasingly under pressure.
Japan Times
JAPAN
May 29, 2015
Coal revival ducks scrutiny with small plants, critics say
As the nation burns more coal to replace lost nuclear capacity, power producers are able to duck pollution standards by building coal-fired projects small enough to avoid national regulator scrutiny, critics say.
Japan Times
JAPAN / ANALYSIS
May 1, 2015
Japan's greenhouse gas proposal draws fire for base year swap
Japan's promise to cut greenhouse gas emissions 26 percent by 2030 is slammed as “almost cheating” for using smoggier 2013 as the new base year.
Japan Times
JAPAN
Apr 12, 2015
Reactor closures to test Abe's green energy pledges
Japan's plan to mothball at least five aging nuclear reactors highlights the challenge Prime Minister Shinzo Abe faces as his administration debates how to replace lost electricity generation with power sources that are cheap, clean and safe.
Japan Times
BUSINESS
Mar 2, 2015
Marubeni faces ship shortage, grid issues in offshore wind push
Marubeni Corp. is planning to develop more than five times the offshore wind power capacity currently installed in Japan as it moves aggressively into a poorly developed area of the country's renewable energy market.
Japan Times
JAPAN / Science & Health
Mar 2, 2015
LEDs fuel drive to cut energy use
Japan's push to keep power flowing after it shuttered its nuclear program may best be illustrated by 73 million light bulbs.
Japan Times
JAPAN
Oct 2, 2014
Clean energy boom challenges power grid
Four regional utilities stopped signing contracts to buy renewable energy from big solar power plants and other suppliers starting Wednesday, limiting an influx that is testing the nation's electricity grid.
BUSINESS
Jul 7, 2014
Electricity gold rush heralds end for monopolies
Watami Co., a restaurant chain known best as a hangout for salarymen, is getting into the business of selling power — and it isn't alone.
Japan Times
BUSINESS / Economy
May 29, 2014
Farmers find a new cash crop in solar power field
The campaign to boost renewable power supplies since the Fukushima nuclear disaster is producing some unlikely winners: vegetable farmers.
Japan Times
BUSINESS / ANALYSIS
Apr 14, 2014
Renewables get raked over coals under Abe
Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is pushing the coal industry to expand sales at home and abroad, undermining hopes among environmentalists that he'd use the Fukushima nuclear disaster to switch the nation to renewables.
Japan Times
ENVIRONMENT
Apr 5, 2014
World 'ill-prepared to face climate risks'
Global warming is depleting fresh water and crops, destroying coral reefs and melting the Arctic, the United Nations said Monday in a report that concludes the world is ill-prepared to face many new threats.
BUSINESS
Feb 14, 2014
Wind lobby raps environment reports
Japan's effort to obtain more power from wind turbines is being held up by requirements that force developers to conduct environmental impact assessments, undermining government support for the industry, according to a lobby group.
Japan Times
BUSINESS
Aug 7, 2013
Can a battery jolt economy?
In a windy town in Hokkaido, an experiment is about to begin with a battery designed to transform the way electricity is supplied and at the same time boost Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's economic rescue plan.
Japan Times
BUSINESS
Jun 19, 2013
Marubeni to set up floating wind turbine off Fukushima in world first
A group led by Marubeni Corp. is setting up a floating wind turbine off the coast of Fukushima Prefecture, aiming to commercialize the unproven technology and create an industry in the region ravaged by the 2011 quake, tsunami and nuclear calamities.
Japan Times
BUSINESS
Jun 7, 2013
Abe plan lifts renewables at utilities' expense
Shinzo Abe's pledge to spur ¥30 trillion of investment in Japan's electricity industry opens the way for a surge in clean energy projects at the expense of traditional utilities.

Longform

Historically, kabuki was considered the entertainment of the merchant and peasant classes, a far cry from how it is regarded today.
For Japan's oldest kabuki theater, the show must go on