• Kyodo

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The cost of power generation will go down substantially by 2010 if a solar power plant is set up in the Chinese part of the Gobi Desert, according to a study group affiliated with a Japanese semigovernmental organization.

According to a recent report compiled by the group under the auspices of the New Energy and Industrial Technology Development Organization, the cost of power generation in China will decline to 7 yen per 1 kwh from the current 20 yen if solar battery panels are installed in 2 sq. km of the desert.

It is said that innovations mean solar power could provide 18 times as much primary energy as people thought in 1995 if panels were placed in half of the world’s deserts.

The study group said the cost of solar battery panels is also expected to decline to 100 yen to 150 yen per 1 watt by 2010, helping to cut the cost of solar power generation as well.

If solar power is promoted together with irrigation and further agricultural development, it will help prevent “global desertification,” a researcher with the organization said.

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