Japan’s nuclear woes continue to mount

Returning Japanese nuclear plants face a difficult future as opposition increases and costs build, leaving the door open for gas
By Andrew Walker 3 January 2017
Kashiwazaki-Kariwa is Japan’s largest nuclear power plant. (Tepco)

Japan’s target for nuclear power to provide more than one-fifth of its electricity supply in 2030 faces challenges, including mounting public opposition, ageing reactors and limited storage space for spent fuel. This means fossil fuels are likely to make up a larger proportion of the country’s power mix in 2030 than the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI) expects. 

The share of gas in Japan’s power mix is projected to fall from around 45% currently to 27% in 2030, according to METI. It is clear...

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