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FACTBOX-Japan's 'energy mix' options

Source: Thomson Reuters Foundation - Thu, 7 Jun 2012 10:45 GMT
Author: Reuters
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June 7 (Reuters) - Experts advising Japan's government this week suggested four options for policymakers to consider when deciding on the best mix of energy sources in the country, with public faith in atomic safety still in tatters following the Fukushima nuclear disaster. The panel ended discussions on Japan's so-called 'energy mix' for 2030, paving the way for a tough decision by policymakers by this summer on the country's power landscape. Suggestions for the nuclear component of electricity supply ranged from zero to 20-25 percent, compared with about 30 percent in the years before a massive earthquake and tsunami sparked the crisis at Tokyo Electric Power Co's Fukushima Daiichi plant. The panel also presented scenarios for the effect working towards each option would have on the country's carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions by 2020, the year by which Tokyo is targeting a reduction of 25 percent of greenhouse gases from 1990 levels. Last year's Fukushima crisis prompted Japan to scrap a 2010 plan to raise the share of nuclear power in electricity supply to over 50 percent by 2030, which was incorporated in the greenhouse gas target. While the advisory panel moves on to discuss other issues involving energy security in the world's third-largest economy, ministers will consider the energy mix proposals before presenting options to the public. The first table below presents the four scenarios for 2030, followed by one that estimates the effect on CO2 emissions as of 2020 as Japan works towards each option. The second table includes two interim scenarios for the first energy mix option suggested by the panel. 2030 ENERGY MIX OPTIONS Nuclear Renewable Fossil fuels Cogeneration FY2010/11 26 pct 11 pct 60 pct 3 pct 1) zero 35 pct 50 pct 15 pct* 2) 15 pct 30 pct 40 pct 15 pct* 3) 20-25 pct 25-30 pct 35 pct 15 pct* 4)** no numerical target POSSIBLE INTERIM MIXES IN 2020 AND THEIR IMPACT ON CO2 EMISSIONS Nuclear Renewable Fossil fuels Cogeneration CO2 vs FY1990/91 FY2010/11 up 6 pct 1) zero 19 pct 75 pct 6 pct up 5 pct 1') 14 pct 19 pct 61 pct 6 pct down 2 pct 2) 21 pct 18 pct 55 pct 6 pct down 5 pct 3) 23-26 pct 17-18 pct 51-53 pct 6 pct down 6-7 pct 4)** no numerical target n.a. * Experts include a pre-set 15 percent share for the usage of combined cycle gas power at companies and houses and a pre-set decline in nationwide electricity demand to 1 trillion kilowatt hours in the fiscal year to March 2031 thanks to energy saving. Electricity demand is, otherwise, estimated to increase to 1.2 trillion kilowatt hours by fiscal 2030/31 from 1.1 trillion in 2010/11, having taken into account the government's most cautious economic outlook. ** Some panel members said users should decide the share of each feedstock after the government has taken steps such as carrying out reforms in the power market to spur competition and crafting insurance to manage the risk of nuclear disaster. (Reporting by Risa Maeda; Editing by Joseph Radford)

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