Last Year’s Country Clubs Could Be Next Year’s Renewable Energy Hubs
Take Part, July 20, 2015. Image credit: naoxephon0
Japanese electronics giant Kyocera recently announced plans to repurpose an abandoned Kyoto golf course as a 23-megawatt solar power plant. The plant will supply enough energy to power more than 8,000 local households.
Japanese golf courses have increased over the last 20 years from a few hundred courses to more than 2,000 today, according to The Independent. The land price and stock market surge made for gross overproduction, and today many of these grounds are going to waste—the country has seen a significant golf industry decline over the last few years, according to a study by the New Delhi–based market research company Ken Research.
Meanwhile, the renewable energy industry is on the rise as meltdowns like Fukushima give nuclear power a bad name. When a magnitude-9.0 earthquake and a subsequent tsunami rocked Japan in 2011, more than 15,000 people were killed as the Fukushima nuclear power plant melted down, releasing mass radiation and contaminating the ocean. The disaster powered down the nuclear energy industry in Japan, and the government followed up by subsidizing solar power in a big way, according to Bloomberg.