Regarding the Nov. 10 editorial, “Winds of energy independence“: Wind power is expensive and will take decades longer to pay off than new Shinkansen rail lines. Energy independence? More like debt dependence. Japan has long passed the 200-percent-debt-to- GDP point. How much more can the state spend while inflating the currency? In the real world, and not the world of wishful thinking, fossil fuels and nuclear power are a necessity.
The editorial concludes: “If wind power continues to develop, maybe one day Fukushima, where the wind turbines are due to start up later this month, may be better remembered as the site of the first viable wind farm instead of as the symbol of Japan’s misguided energy policies of the past.”
Continue to develop? Wind power is not new; it is old technology that has niche uses.
But if wind power was affordable and efficient, the government wouldn’t have to steal money from everyone to implement it. The market would simply adapt. The same state monopoly that made the nuclear disaster worse than it would have been otherwise has so many regulations that result in exorbitant construction costs that nothing can be built privately — fossil-fuel based, “renewables” or nuclear.
Beyond the fear of nuclear plants, where is the death toll? Where are the cancers? If a hydroelectric dam had been breached instead of a nuclear plant being damaged, the resultant extra flooding would have had a death count. If a solar battery catches fire and explodes, what do you think the result will be for the people around it?
All this fear of nuclear power is based on the idea of a similar incident happening again. But people are infinitely safer now. Because of Fukushima, we have knowledge that we didn’t have before. What happens when the next tsunami wipes out the wind farms being erected along the coast? Do you go into further debt to replace them?
The opinions expressed in this letter to the editor are the writer’s own and do not necessarily reflect the policies of The Japan Times.