Toshio Sugiura, Embassy of Japan Counselor: 'Smart Grids' will Boost Bulgaria's Energy Efficiency
Interview of Novinite.com with Mr. Toshio Sugiura, Counselor at the Embassy of Japan in Bulgaria. He discusses the initiative „Smart Community 2020”, which will be presented on November 27 by guest lecturer Fumitoshi Emura from Hitachi.
Can you tell us more about the “Smart Community”? How can it be implemented in Bulgaria?
The “smart community” provides the opportunity for optimization of the supply and demand of renewable energy, for the efficient use of electricity through “smart grids”, as well as the monitoring of energy consumption in the home through the use of “smart sensors”. It is a combination of various technological innovations to achieve a new type of public infrastructure.
Actually, internet banking, which is used in Bulgaria, represents a component of the “smart community”.
Over the past years, Bulgaria has made steps to move towards an e-Government, which would give online access to administrative services for citizens and businesses. This means the country is on the road to developing a “smart community”.
“Smart Community” is a method for dealing with the environmental and energy problems of today, through stimulating efficient innovations.
Is Bulgaria prepared to move towards smart energy systems? What are the main challenges in this sector?
Until 2012, Bulgaria's renewable energy sector was developing extremely fast. This led to an imbalance in the electricity system, which had a significant impact on prices for households and businesses.
One of the main pillars of the “smart community”are the “smart grids”. They make possible the managing of electricity production and consumption from intermittent sources like solar and wind power. It is a system which will prove indispensable for Bulgaria.
It must be clear that the “smart community” is made up of various components, and its achievement depends on the tight collaboration among experts from different fields.
What steps is the Japanese government taking to promote renewable energy? How does it reach out to the public?
The natural resources of Japan set the precondition for using renewable energy sources. However, due to its high price, this sector is not developed enough.
Starting July 1, 2012, the Japanese government introduced preferential tariffs for renewable energy. Businesses producing their own renewable energy can sell it under preferential prices for a certain period of time. The consumers of green energy pay an extra tax on their bills.
The state assists any household, which decides to install a solar generator, which has sharply increased their number. It will continue to stimulate the sector in the future as well.
I would like to use the opportunity to announce that the Embassy of Japan, in cooperation with the Bulgarian Chamber of Commerce, is organizing a lecture on Japan's proposal for “Smart Community 2020”. The lecture, which is a part of the 24th Days of Japanese Culture, will take place in the Bulgarian Chamber of Commerce on November 27, from 10 AM – 12 AM.
For more information please visit the embassy's website www.bg.emb-japan.go.jp/bg/index.html
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Japan is cool - didn't read the entire interview though I agree that we need egovernment, smart grid, more solar panels, electric cars and what not. The communists currently are STOPPING all this...they want us to remain slaves to the eu and have "cooperation" with communist china and the paranoid americans. We don't need that - but yeah...Japan sounds like a great country, id' like to see it one day.