Event ReportsPublished on Jul 26, 2010
Japanese are leaders in global technology dealing with energy efficiency and energy savings. As a result, Japan has lowest energy intensity amongst all countries. This situation was brought about in a dramatic change after the 1974 oil shock.
Prospects of Indo-Japanese cooperation in energy efficiency
The importance of dissemination of efficient energy technology in India was highlighted in a meeting between delegates from New Energy and Industrial Technology Development Organization (NEDO), Japan and the faculty of Observer Research Foundation (ORF).

Japanese are leaders in global technology dealing with energy efficiency and energy savings. As a result, Japan has lowest energy intensity amongst all countries. This situation was brought about in a dramatic change after the 1974 oil shock.

A presentation was given by Mr. Yoshida representing the NEDO. NEDO conducts various activities focusing on research and development related to oil-alternative energy technology, technology for efficient use of energy and industrial technology. Its programmes and projects include promotion of private sector participation in national technology development projects, support for the private sector’s own research and development efforts and dissemination of newly developed technology. All these activities are carried out in a concerted and internationally coordinated manner.

NEDO endeavors to ensure stable and efficient supply of energy under changing domestic and international socio-economic conditions. Its activities include research, introduction and dissemination of new energy technology and acquisition of emission reduction credits through the Kyoto mechanism. Its international project activities is focused on the concern of increasing energy consumption due to exponential economic growth in the Asia-Pacific region causing problems like increasing SOX and NOX emissions , inadequate waste and waste water treatment and increased green house gases contributing to climate change.

The project development activities comprise of demonstration and dissemination of Japanese technology for efficient use of energy by engaging in joint research projects with corporations, universities and research institutes of host countries. These include projects for increasing efficient use of energy, coal utilization projects, photovoltaic power generation systems and international cooperative research programmes. The fundamental research projects are followed by model projects which include feasibility studies, model projects and follow up dissemination activities. This is followed by the major step for technology dissemination.

The project implementation scheme comprises of an MoU between NEDO and the responsible government organization in the host country side. NEDO would then entrust the work to a certain Japanese company which would come into a detailed agreement on practical project matters via an implementation document(ID) with an implementation site firm selected by the responsible organization in the host country. The work sharing responsibilities have been clearly delineated.

The energy cooperation had been discussed in Japan-India energy dialogue between the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry  and the Planning Commission of India.

On questions raised on the response of Indian Industry to the projects initiated, it was said that one of the major obstacles was that of technology dissemination. An example of 400 corporates generating 95% of emissions in India was cited to underline the criticality of dissemination. It was suggested that NEDO ensure close cooperation with FICCI and CII. It was also mentioned that the government of Japan had taken critical actions which had brought about such a change-regulation and subsidy.

The lack of third party assessment was also cited as another major obstacle, leading to issues related to  propriety domain and competitive market advantage. Questions were also raised regarding the scaling up of successful pilot projects ,and it was said that the onus to scale up lay with the host country. It was suggested that a cost benefit analysis by a third party could be used to analyse the success of the project which could then be scaled up after making the required technological modifications to suit economic tenability.

The success of similar projects in China was highlighted to underscore its viability. It was also said that Indian and Chinese energy intensity was higher than Japan’s due to high dependence on coal and pricing policies. The option of cooperative projects with Observer Research Foundation (ORF) was also discussed. The meeting was chaired by Mr. Sunjoy Joshi, Distinguished Fellow, ORF.

Report prepared by Akhilesh Variar, Research Intern

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