While Economic Minister avoids clear messages,
Environmental Minister didn’t approve new coal power plant, again. :
Coal power needs to be stopped.
August 28th, 2015
Today, August 28th, the Ministry of Environment issued a statement expressing their disapproval of a planned coal plant in Sodegaura, Chiba based on the document of planning phase of the plant’s environmental impact assessment co-funded by the developers Idemitsu Kosan, Kyushu Electric Power and Tokyo Gas Company.
Along with two previous disapproval for planned coal plants in Yamaguchi and Aichi, Kiko Network stands by the Ministry of Environment in their disapproval of the Chiba coal plant. This makes it the third coal plant plan that has been rejected by the Ministry this year.
According to the Minister of Environment’s statement, this coal facility has a potential capacity of approximately 2000MW, which will be one of the largest coal plants among other construction plants, and will emit large amounts of CO2. The Minister stated that measures to protect the environment are essential to achieve the nation’s greenhouse gas emissions reduction target and plan. With this new construction plan, however, Minister said, it is difficult to live up to Japan’s INDC and achieve the target energy mix.
On the other hand, the Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI) released a statement on their website on August 27th in regards to the Chubu Electric’s document of planning phase for its replacement of the Taketoyo thermal power plant with coal. Although the METI Minister is required to take the statement on the Ministry of Environment into account, the Minister completely disregarded the Minister of Environment’s disapproval for the coal plant particularly in regards to potential CO2 emissions. The Minister touched on several other points such as air and water pollution, thermal discharge and waste, however the Minister was rather vague when it came to CO2 emissions in relation to Japan’s emissions reduction target and the swift materialization of concrete rules and mechanisms for the power industry’s voluntary framework. METI was required based on the statement of Ministry of Environment, to rethink the project itself due to potentially large amounts of CO2 emissions, but there was no mention of measures for CO2 emissions reduction.
New coal-fired power plants have the potential to emit CO2 emissions continuously for approximately 40 years while its operation, which ultimately increases risks of climate change and places a large burden on future generations. Therefore, we request developers move away from coal and switch over to clean, renewable energy projects. In addition, the METI Minister has to seriously consider the statement made by the Minister of Environment, as this is the third time in a row that the Minister has disapproved coal-fired power plants and proceed environmental assessments process properly to function for original end.
The Minister of Environment submits statement on the planning stages of the environmental impact assessment for the construction of Chiba Sodegaura thermal power plant (tentative name) Units 1 and 2 (Japanese)
August 28th, 2015
While Economic Minister avoids clear messages, Environmental Minister didn’t approve new coal power plant, again :
Coal power needs to be stopped.(PDF)
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