10 Août 2012
August 10, 2012
Economy, Trade and Industry Minister Yukio Edano says a new energy and environment policy under consideration will not set 2030 as a clear-cut target year for reduced nuclear energy dependency despite overwhelming public support for the so-called zero option.
Edano, appearing on a program on the Internet, said Aug. 9 that the government of Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda has not decided to set 2030 as a target year under the new energy policy.
The government has presented three options regarding nuclear power in its new energy policy --- zero percent, 15 percent and 20-25 percent. Although a majority of people are in favor of the zero option, they differ over when Japan should end its reliance on nuclear energy.
After the Internet program, Edano told reporters the government has debated the issue based on the current energy policy which calls for boosting the nation's dependence on nuclear energy to 53 percent in 2030 from about 26 percent in 2010. He said the government will not stick with the 2030 target.
The current policy was formulated well before the Great East Japan Earthquake and tsunami triggered the crisis at the Fukushima No. 1 Nuclear Power Plant in March last year.
The industry minister expressed hope that the Noda government will decide on the proposed new energy policy before the House of Representatives will be dissolved for a general election,referring to a three-way agreement among the ruling Democratic Party of Japan, the largest opposition Liberal Democratic Party and New Komeito party to seek a public mandate.