Bloomberg News

Japan to Outline Options for Future Energy Mix by End-March

December 07, 2011

Dec. 6 (Bloomberg) -- Japan plans to present options for its energy mix by the end of March before it draws up a new master plan in the summer to replace an energy policy that relied on nuclear power.

Proposals being considered include drastically increasing energy conservation and speeding up the introduction of renewable energy, according to the draft proposals handed out today after an Advisory Committee on Natural Resource and Energy subcommittee meeting in Tokyo.

Japan is reviewing its policy after public confidence in nuclear energy was shattered by the March 11 earthquake and tsunami, which crippled Tokyo Electric Power Co.’s Fukushima Dai-Ichi plant and triggered the worst atomic disaster since Chernobyl 25 years ago. The existing energy master plan relies on atomic energy to supply 53 percent of the country’s power needs by 2030.

“Following the earthquake and the nuclear accident, we need to revise that energy composition,” according to the draft.

Japan may allow consumers to decide how their power is generated and offer bigger incentives for power saving to stimulate changes in the country’s energy supply structure, the draft said.

The nation needs to move away from the current system, where 10 utilities and one wholesaler control the power transmission network, making it difficult for independent companies to enter the market, the subcommittee said in the draft.

Regional utilities, led by Tokyo Electric, and Electric Power Development Co., known as J-Power, control the grid.

--Editors: Alex Devine, Tony Barrett

To contact the reporter on this story: Yuji Okada in Tokyo at yokada6@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Alexander Kwiatkowski at akwiatkowsk2@bloomberg.net


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