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APEC draft


June 24, 2012


APEC ministers to agree on importance of nuclear energy use: draft



TOKYO (Kyodo) -- Energy ministers of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation forum will agree at their two-day meeting from Sunday in St. Petersburg, Russia, on the importance of using nuclear energy to reduce carbon dioxide emission and to meet the growing demand for energy, a draft of the joint declaration obtained by Kyodo News showed Saturday.

"The APEC region recognizes the importance of the safe and secure uses of peaceful nuclear energy, and its potential in diversifying our energy mix, meeting the growing energy demand, and in reducing greenhouse gas emissions in the region despite the tragic accident at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power station" triggered by the March 2011 earthquake and tsunami, the draft of the "St. Petersburg Declaration" said.

The draft showed that the declaration, to be adopted Monday, will largely reflect the views of countries promoting nuclear power plants, led by Russia and the United States, while urging Japan to share the lessons it has learnt from the Fukushima crisis.

While the member countries and relevant international organizations coordinate efforts to ensure nuclear safety and dealing with possible problems, "We expect that Japan should contribute to the international approach by sharing its knowledge and experience, including information on the Fukushima Daiichi accident," the draft said, adding they "recognize the progress made by the Japanese government to bring the station to a stable condition."

Particular attention should be paid to strengthening cooperation by interested member economies of APEC and the relevant international organizations, notably the International Atomic Energy Agency, including "sharing knowledge and experience on nuclear technologies and safety at nuclear power stations and related facilities to improve nuclear safety standards, and coordinate emergency response and preparedness mechanisms," the draft said.

Noting that natural gas emits relatively small amounts of carbon dioxide, the APEC economies recognize it is important "to evaluate the production, trade potential and environmental impact of shale gas and other unconventional gas resources," according to the draft.

They will also promote steady investment in natural gas infrastructure, including liquefaction facilities, the draft said.

Economy, Trade and Industry Minister Yukio Edano will attend the meeting from Japan and is expected to hold bilateral talks with the representatives from Russia, the United States and Australia.




Saturday, June 23, 2012

APEC meet to uphold nuke power



Energy ministers of Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation forum members are expected to issue a joint statement after their meeting next week that will confirm the importance of nuclear energy, Jiji Press learned Thursday.


The ministers are expected to highlight the role of nuclear power in securing energy security by reducing dependence on fossil fuels and combating climate change by reducing carbon dioxide emissions, sources said.

Russia, the chair of the Sunday-Monday meeting in St. Petersburg, maintains its policy to promote nuclear power despite the triple-meltdown crisis that started in March 2011 at Tokyo Electric Power Co.'s Fukushima No.1 nuclear plant.

As an important means of acquiring foreign currency, Russia intends to expand nuclear power plant exports. The joint statement will reflect Russia's stance, the sources said.

At the meeting, Japan, which plans to reduce its dependence on nuclear energy, will explain its responses to the nuclear accident and steps it has taken to restart idled reactors at a Kansai Electric Power Co. plant. It will urge other APEC members to share technical knowledge on nuclear safety measures.

The joint statement will underline the need for efforts to boost nuclear safety, in addition to underscoring the importance of atomic power, the sources said.

At the meeting, the ministers will discuss various issues, such as energy conservation, ways to promote smart communities utilizing renewable energy, emergency responses to geopolitical risks in the Middle East, and promotion of natural gas use.




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