Nations around the world are making great strides in their attempts to use more and more renewable energy sources to generate electricity for homes, businesses, and events. Renewable energy was once considered to be only a minor player in overall energy production. However, some nations are generating over 25 percent of their electrical capacity from renewable sources.
In 2020, Tokyo is set to host the Olympic Games. These games require a great deal of energy to operate. Energy needs to be generated to operate the lighting in stadiums and arenas. The entire Olympic Village where athletes are housed will require significant power generation.
At most Olympic Games in the past, The Olympic Village and stadiums simply used power from the sources contributing to the existing power grid. The officials operating the Olympic Games upcoming in Tokyo don’t want to do it that way. They plan to generate all of the power used in the Olympics from renewable sources.
There are two main ways that the Olympic organizers plan to utilize renewable sources of energy. One way is through purchasing power from existing energy providers that make use of renewable sources.
Japan, just like many other nations, is developing its renewable energy infrastructure. The nation has a significant wind energy production capability. The Olympics will use energy generated from wind and solar operations owned by public utilities. This will go a long way in meeting the goal of a 100 percent renewable energy Olympics, but it isn’t the only area of focus.
Olympic organizers are also pursuing an idea of using solar power from solar panels installed in roadways. These type of solar panels have a special resin that keeps them from being damaged.
In order to see if this concept would work, a trial was created. A convenience store in Tokyo installed several solar panels in its parking area. Since the installation, the store is drawing 10 percent of its power from solar sources.
Solar panels in roads and pathways are a success in other places. Solar panels are used in roadways in France, and the Netherlands has placed solar panels in some of the pathways created for bicycle riders.
The Tokyo Olympics are fast approaching. It will be interesting to see if Tokyo meets its goal of a 100 percent renewable energy Olympics.