Power-saving targets may be axed for first time since 3/11

JIJI, Kyodo

The government may not set numerical power-saving goals this summer, sources said Tuesday.

Thanks to continuing efforts to save electricity nationwide and progress in building new thermal power plants and repairing existing ones, the country is not expected to face tight power supply even if none of its currently suspended nuclear reactors are restarted.

It would be the first time no power-saving goals have been introduced since the Great East Japan Earthquake and tsunami crippled the Fukushima No. 1 power plant in March 2011. The ensuing nuclear crisis led to the shutdowns of all commercial atomic reactors in the country, and only two have been reactivated.

According to estimates reported by the nine regional utilities that operate nuclear plants, supply capacity will exceed demand by an average of 6.3 percent in August, above the minimum threshold of 3 percent.

The estimates are based on the premise that the two reactors operated by Kansai Electric Power Co. at its Oi complex in Fukui Prefecture will continue to operate throughout the summer. Even Kepco and Kyushu Electric Power Co., which introduced electricity-saving targets of at least 10 percent last summer, are expected to attain the minimum 3 percent in excess supply.

Also, the government maintains that the utilities have established an electricity-sharing system to avoid power outages.

  • Wow, what a hypocritical concept. Shut down nuclear power and instead rely on fossil fuel burning power generation instead. Do you really think the country has the renewable energy infrastructure in place already? No it doesn’t, which means that fossil fuel powered plants are being used to generate the majority of the country’s electricity requirements. This is NOT good for the environment. Japan is struck by an extremely rare, once in 1000 year event and suddenly the country is going nuts shutting down all of its nuclear power plants and inventing ridiculous measures which completely contradict their apparent planet-saving goals. I can’t believe the Japanese people are naive enough to fall for this.
    One of the iconic attractions of Japan are its incredible neon nightscapes and if you lose this attraction then you will be losing a large number of foreign tourists.