Japan

Promotion of Zero Energy Building (ZEB) and Zero Energy Houses (ZEH)

Background

Japanese government considers Zero Energy Buildings (ZEB) and Zero Energy House (ZEH) are recognized as the key energy savings technologies. For example, Government’s national strategic documents such as 2011 Energy conservation technology strategy and the latest 2014 Basic Energy Plan, importance of ZEB and ZEH are identified as the key driving technologies for energy savings in the residential and commercial sectors. METI’s Agency of Natural Resources of Energy has been allocating large amount of budget for the promotional projects (in the form of subsidies) toward the introduction of energy savings technologies that can meet the ZEB/ZEH criteria. The target for ZEB and ZEH are clearly specified in 2014 Basic Energy Plan as follows:

ZEB

  • Realize ZEB for newly constructed public buildings, etc., by the year 2020.
  • Realize ZEB for an average of newly constructed buildings by the year 2030.

ZEH

  • Achieve zero energy in newly constructed standard houses by 2020.
  • Achieve zero energy houses in the average of newly constructed houses by 2030.

In order to archive the above target, the government announced the definitions as well as the roadmap for ZEB and ZEH in December 2015.

Applicable Building Type(s)

New residential, New non-residential, Existing residential, Existing non-residential

Policy Requirement Level

Voluntary

Policy Sequence

Governance

Development Authority: Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI)

Implementation Authority: Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI)

Incentive Details

Instrument Type: Economic Instruments>Fiscal/financial incentives>Grants and subsidies

Total Policy Cost:

Subsidy Budget : 11 billion yen (FY2016)

Current subsidy scheme

In FY 2016, METI implements “The Promotion Project for the Introduction of Innovative Energy Saving Technology for Houses and Buildings”. This project’s objective is the promotion of houses and buildings with high energy saving performances to reduce energy costs, and aims to achieve the ZEB and ZEH target by 2020. The details of this program as follows.

Total budget: 11 billion yen (in FY2016)

Subsidy amount and rate: 1.25 million yen per house (ZEH), within 1/3 to 2/3 of the total cost of high efficiency installations and heat insulation materials installed to achieve ZEB (ZEB).

 

Recipient Types: Individuals, Companies

Compliance path

Registration System

In 2016, Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI) has started “Registration System of ZEH Builder” in order to promote and improve the awareness of ZEH. A home builder registers this system can receive a grant for the construction of ZEH. Meanwhile, the registered home builders are required to comply with some obligations listed as below:

  • To set the annual target of the number of ZEH through on condition that more than half of the total newly constructed houses would have to satisfy the ZEH definition by 2020.
  • To publish an annual target on the ZEH builders’ home page
  • To implement measures to achieve the target.
  • To report an annual achievement such as implementation of measures, the number of total newly built house, the number of ZEHs and the percentage of ZEH to total number of newly built house.

Government subsidies are provided to the construction company/house builders/owners when the buildings comply with definition of ZEB and ZEH at design phase. ZEB and ZEH according to the ZEB/ZEH roadmap committee in Dec 2015, this Roadmap is defined as a building or house with zero net primary energy consumption annually, usually utilizing a combination of energy producing technologies including renewable energy, and energy efficient facilities and systems. Aside from the definitions for ZEB/ZEH, for promotional purpose, committee has established definitions for Nearly ZEB, ZEB Ready and Nearly ZEH. The details of these definitions as follows.

 

1.ZEB definition

ZEB is categorized as “ZEB”, “Nearly ZEB” and “ZEB Ready”.

  • ZEB: Net energy savings* of 100% or more compared with reference building in Energy Efficiency Standard, and fulfilling “ZEB Ready” definition.
  • Nearly ZEB: Net energy savings* of 75% or more compared with reference building in Energy Efficiency Standard, and fulfilling “ZEB Ready” definition.
  • ZEB Ready: Energy savings** of 50% or more compared with reference building in Energy Efficiency Standard.

2.ZEH definition

ZEH is categorized as “ZEH” and “Nearly ZEH”.

  • ZEH

1) Net energy savings* of 100% or more compared with reference building in Energy Efficiency Standard

2) Energy savings** of 20% or more compared with reference building in Energy Efficiency Standard.

3) To comply with ZEH Envelop Performance Standard.

  • Nearly ZEH

1) Net energy savings* of 75% or more compared with reference building in Energy Efficiency Standard

2) Energy savings** of 20% or more compared with reference building in Energy Efficiency Standard.

3) To comply with ZEH Envelop Performance Standard.

*Net energy savings include renewable energy.

**Energy savings exclude renewable energy.

Energy Requirements:

End-uses considered:

Appliances, Equipment, Lighting exterior, Lighting interior, Space cooling, Space heating, Ventilation, Water heating

Resources

Description

Notes

Climate Zones