Japan Takes Two Steps Back on Coal and Solar
Japan’s government has lifted a ban on new coal-fired power plants, and may cut incentives for solar.
The country’s environment ministry has abandoned opposition to new coal-fired power stations and may approve as many 43 new installations in the next few years, for 20.5 gigawatts of new capacity, about a 50% increase from present production levels, Reuters confirms.
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The decision “puts Japan further out of step with other industrialized economies that have been restricting coal to meet commitments on carbon emissions agreed between 200 nations in Paris two months ago,” the news agency notes. Electrical generation produces about 40% of Japan’s greenhouse gas emissions.
Meanwhile, a government-appointed panel has recommended that Japan cut incentives for solar developers by 11%, Bloomberg reports, citing falling infrastructure costs. The proposal, the result of a statutory annual review, could come into effect as early as April 1.