Renewable energy to be a key pillar in Japan's new energy policy, Prime Minister says

Japan to promote renewable energy after nuclear crisis

Renewable energy will be a key pillar of Japan’s new energy policy, Japanese Prime Minister Naoto Kan says.

Kan also said that Japan’s basic energy plan to build new atomic reactors to increase the share of nuclear power in electricity supply in the future must be reviewed from scratch.

Japan’s current energy policy “envisages that over 50 per cent of total electricity supply will come from nuclear power while more than 20 per cent will come from renewable power in 2030. But that basic plan needs to be reviewed now from scratch after this big incident,” Kan said.

March’s quake and tsunami knocked out cooling system at the Fukushima Daiichi plant and Japanese engineers are still trying to get it under control.

“I think it is necessary to move in the direction of promoting natural energy and renewable energy,” Kan said, citing wind, solar or biomass energy as possible alternative sources - areas that Japan lag globally.

Kan said Japan would need to conduct a thorough investigation into the nuclear incident, adding he wants to call on the international community for safer use of nuclear power.

Meanwhile, he has called for Chubu Electric’s Hamaoka nuclear plant in central Japan to halt operations until it can be better defended against a major tsunami, and Chubu have agreed to this.

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