In Japan, Solar Panels Aid in Tsunami Rebuilding
Kenichi Hazawa, a resident of Ofunato in Japan’s Iwate Prefecture, moved into his new home this summer—a milestone in and of itself. The rebuilding job has been monumental in this coastal city, where almost one-quarter of the 15,000 homes were destroyed by the March 11, 2011, earthquake and tsunami, and nearly 8,000 people were forced into temporary housing. (See related, “Rare Video: Japan Tsunami.”) But there’s an important crowning touch on Hazawa’s home: rooftop solar panels.
It was the first solar power generation system installed by Habitat for Humanity Japan under its “Solar Home Recovery Project,” offering photovoltaic (PV) systems to victims of the tsunami, particularly those with disabilities.
The project takes advantage of Japan’s new feed-in tariff (FIT) incentive