National

Masuzoe announces public-private fund to boost renewable energy

by Masaaki Kameda

Staff Writer

Tokyo Gov. Yoichi Masuzoe said Friday that the metropolitan government will create a joint fund between the public and private sectors to invest in renewable energy generation.

Increasing the ratio of natural energy in Tokyo’s consumption and reduce dependence on nuclear power was one of the new governor’s campaign pledges.

“I have given instructions (to relevant divisions) to look into setting up a public-private fund, focusing on renewable energy,” Masuzoe at his first regular news conference since he was elected last Sunday.

He said he will try to increase the ratio of renewable energy to 20 percent, up from 6 percent but without giving a specific time frame.

Masuzoe, who took office Tuesday, said he expects the fund to reach about ¥4 billion, with the metropolitan government kicking in ¥1 billion and the private sector the rest.

On where facilities to generate renewable energy might go, Masuzoe cited the Tohoku region, devastated by the March 11, 2011, earthquake and tsunami, as a possibility.

“We’d like to support affected areas in Tohoku,” Masuzoe said. “It would contribute to economic revitalization in the region.”