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Japan 'plans solar panels for all new buildings'

TOKYO (AFP) – Japan is considering a plan that would make it compulsory for all new buildings and houses to come fitted with solar panels by 2030, a business daily said Sunday.

The plan, expected to be unveiled at the upcoming G8 Summit in France, aims to show Japan's resolve to encourage technological innovation and promote the wider use of renewable energy, the Nikkei daily said.

Japan has reeled from the March 11 earthquake and tsunami and the nuclear crisis they triggered as it battles to stabilise the crippled Fukushima Daiichi atomic power plant.

On Thursday, the first day of the two-day summit in Deauville, France, Prime Minister Naoto Kan is expected to announce Japan's intention to continue operating nuclear plants after confirming their safety, the Nikkei said without citing sources.

But he is also expected to unveil a plan to step up efforts to push renewable energy and energy conservation.

Kan believes that the installation of solar panels would help Japan realise such goals, the Nikkei said.

He hopes that technological innovation will drastically bring down costs of solar power generation and thereby make the use of renewable energy more widespread, it said.

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