The Growing Impact of Decentralised Actors in Power Generation: A Comparative Analysis of the Energy Transition in Germany and Japan

Review paper

Journal of Sustainable Development of Energy, Water and Environment Systems
Volume 9, Issue 4, 1080334
Oliver Wagner , Maike Venjakob, Judith Schröder
Wuppertal Institute for Climate, Environment and Energy, Döppersberg 19, 42103 Wuppertal, Germany


This paper argues that, although Japan’s and Germany’s energy transition paths differ in detail, a trend towards decentralisation is clearly evident in both countries. Based on comprehensive screening, own stocktaking and the results of a stakeholder dialogue, this paper highlights the motivation for different local actors to enter the energy market in both countries. Although there are challenges to success in a market dominated by large energy companies, this paper argues that the benefits to local communities outweigh the efforts. Overall, it is shown that democratisation and the decentralisation of the energy system are suitable to facilitate a successful transformation process in both countries.

Keywords: Energy transition, Decentralisation, Community energy, Power, Politics, Energy market, Participative governance.

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