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Proposing a renewable heat incentive scheme for GSHP in Japan, a techno-economic analysis

Author(s): Hadi Farabi-Asla*, Andrew Chapmanb, Farhad Taghizadeh-Hesaryc, Saeid Mohammadzadeh Binad

a Research Institute for Humanity and Nature, Kyoto, Japan
b International Institute for Carbon-Neautral Energy Research (I2CNER), Kyushu University, Fukuoka, Japan
c School of Political Science and Economics, Tokai University, Kanagawa, Japan
d Graduate School of International Resource Sciences, Akita University, Akita, Japan
International Journal of Smart Grid and Clean Energy, vol. 10, no. 3, July 2021: pp. 244-252
Digital Object Identifier: 10.12720/sgce.10.3.244-252

Abstract: Ground source heat pumps (GSHPs) provide efficient technology to meet the heating and cooling demands of buildings. However, their deployment is limited in Japan, mainly due to high drilling costs. Application of GSHP systems in Japanese residential buildings as substitutes for kerosene heaters and even air source heat pump (ASHP) systems, especially in northern Japan, would help to achieve the country’s emission reduction goals in upcoming decades.
This study conducted a techno-economic analysis and investigated a renewable heat incentive (RHI) scheme for GSHP system installation in Japan’s cold climates. The heating load for a sample residential single-family building in Sapporo City in northern Japan was calculated over one heating season. The required ground heat exchanger (GHE) length for a GSHP system was estimated to meet the heating demand of the building, and the total cost of the GSHP system was calculated. The payback period of the investment was calculated in various renewable heat incentive schemes. Results of the analysis showed that the renewable heat incentive could be a strong tool for accelerating the GSHP system deployment in residential buildings in Japan if suitable RHI tariffs and payment period were available.

Keywords: Ground source heat pump, renewable heat incentive, techno-economic analysis, Japan, market-based policies