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Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Japan ups CO2 offset buying as nuclear power slows

Japan is stepping up efforts to meet its Kyoto Protocol targets by buying more greenhouse gas emissions offsets from abroad than previously planned as its own emissions rise and nuclear power production dwindles.
Japan has become a major emissions credit buyer, using the New Energy and Industrial Technology Development Organisation (NEDO) as its agent. Having already bought 23 million in the past two years, the government says it will buy at least 77 million more tonnes of carbon offset credits by 2012.
In addition, electric power firms, such as Tokyo Electric Power Co. will have to invest in more clean energy projects abroad to make up for carbon emitted from their own plants, because emission-free nuclear power generation is lower than expected, analysts said on Monday.
TEPCO's Kashiwazaki-Kariwa plant, the world's biggest nuclear power station, has been shut since July after being damaged by an earthquake, forcing TEPCO to work its thermal plants harder and to buy electricity from other firms.
"Apart from the government's planned purchase of offset credits, the private sector will have to buy double or more than that," said Yoichi Kaya, director-general of Research Institute of Innovative Technology for Earth.
"Electric power companies are in a tough situation as the 120 million tonnes (of offsets) they have secured would not be enough given a halt of the Kashiwazaki-Kariwa plant," said Kaya, who also chairs a newly-launched group investigating carbon trading for Japan's trade ministry.
Japan has said it intends to meet its obligations under the Kyoto Protocol on climate change by purchasing around 100 million tonnes of credits to be delivered between 2008 and 2012.
These credits could come from privately-owned clean energy projects in developing countries or from countries like Russia which, under the Kyoto Protocol, have a surplus of governmental carbon credits, called AAUs.

(read more)
(Source: Reuters)


Alexandra Prokopenko said...

Here comes the follow-up to the previously discussed topic, clarifying a bit the case with nuclear power in Japan.

Simpson said...

Is Kashiwazaki Kariwa still closed I wonder, and when do they plan to run it again if yes?

Joffan said...

I hear (from Reuters) that unit 7 may restart this year.

Basically though, the incredibly detailed inspection of the reactor vessels carried out after the quake has found nothing that would have made the reactors unsafe to continue operating. Any other technology would have been running again the following week if (BIG if) it had managed to survive as completely as the KK reactors did.