Japans Energy Crisis leaves future in question.


May 10 2011

Japans Energy Crisis leaves future in question.

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In recent months since the devastating earthquake Japan has been struggling to make up for their lost nuclear reactors.  Japan had an ambitious goal of having over 78 reactors by 2030 at the latest.  If Japan were able to complete all of these reactors nuclear energy would be supplying 50% of the countries energy.  Clearly these plans have been halted due to the recent earthquakes and Japan needs to find a clear solution to make up for this loss.

Some feel that this loss gives the country the opportunity to become a world leader in clean energy sources.  Japan has the chance to increase their dependence on geothermal, wind, and solar energy.  Masayoshi Son, president and founder of Softbank and Japans riches man said he would give 12 million dollars to research foundations to explore these opportunities.  He said continued reliance on nuclear energy would, “be a sin against out children, grandchildren, and future generations” Though many are for the development of nuclear energy some feel that is will be way to expensive in the tight economic times.  Clean energy would cost up to 30.5 Yen per kilowatt as opposed to fossil fuels, which are closer to 9 Yen.

Japans dependence on nuclear power comes from its energy insecurity it has been experiencing for years.  They produce little to no fossil fuels, which leads them to pursue other energy sources to compensate.  Japan is extra sensitive to disruptions in the Middle East because of their dependence on consistent oil prices.  In the wake of such an awful disaster Japan needs to get back on its feet and excel in clean energy use.  They have the opportunity to innovate and change the clear energy industry if they have the support of the citizens.  Last year Japan was the leading installer of solar panels in front of Germany and Spain.  If Japan continues along this path they will be able to be confident on their reliance on clean energy.

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/05/10/business/energy-environment/10yen.html?pagewanted=2&_r=1&hp

http://www.timesunion.com/default/article/Japan-nuclear-plant-closing-while-seawall-is-built-1372763.php

2 Responses to “Japans Energy Crisis leaves future in question.”

  1. mrousseau Says:

    Although it is great that something positive can come out of the devastating earthquakes in Japan, it also may not be great for the US. Green energy is clearly the next major move in the economic world. If we let Japan step in front of us and start spending more money and investing more people into green energy than they will be the leading country in them, and we will start buying technologies from them. We need to step up our investments and research so that we can take the lead on the new green economy.

  2. mcatts Says:

    I definitely think Japan should invest in different sources of energy in the long-term. However, I do understand that right now, it is important to recover from the damage that has already been done. It’s also very scary to see that the damage done to Japan’s exposure to radiation was comparable to Chernobyl, which had devastating effects on the population.

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