Goal of 100% Renewable Energy Production

March 31, 2011 10:16 PM

Since the events of 3/11, it has become necessary to revise Japan's and the world's energy strategy.

In particular, Japan's inadequate energy policy should be thoroughly remodeled.

In order to make policy change feasible, strong political leadership, consensus and rule making, and technological development are strongly recommended.

Future political decisions must prevent the allocation of new lands for nuclear energy production. If all nuclear energy reactors are decommissioned within the next 40 years, Japan's nuclear energy production will halt by approximately year 2050.

Specifically, energy saving and reduction must reach a 20% implementation rate by year 2020, and the energy lost by decommissioned reactors must be supplemented by energy generated from natural gas and renewable energy sources.

            2010    2020
Energy reduction       -    20%
Renewable energy   10%    30% (37%)
Nuclear power       25%    10% (13%)
Natural gas        25%    25% (32%)
Petroleum and coal    40%    15% (18%)
( )represents the energy configuration in year 2020

The final goal is a 100% renewable energy supply production while continuing to promote energy efficiency.

Many agencies such as the European Climate Forum (ECF), the German Advisory Council on the Environment (SRU), the European Renewable Energy Council (EREC), and the German Federal Environmental Agency (UBA) have set forth proposals to achieve a scenario of 100% renewable energy production by the year 2050.

Japan's political leadership also must strive for a renewable energy production of 100% by 2050. This requires consensus building, rule establishment, and the progression of technological development.

Surprisingly, in 2005, Japan's share of the world's annual production of solar energy was 47% with 1759 MW. However, inadequate policies made by the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry, energy companies, and politicians who advocate the nuclear program in both the Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ) and the Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) have lead to a decrease in Japan's shares.

    Annual Production   Japan's share
2005    1759MW     47%
2007    4729MW     25%
2008    7350MW     18%
2009    10000MW<    12%

Within the past 10 years, investments in natural energy have dramatically increased globally.

2002   $22 (billion)
2003   $27
2004   $35
2005   $60
2006   $93
2007   $148
2008   $155
2009   $186.5
2010   $243

At the end of 2010, the world's wind energy installation capacity was 190 million kW, whereas the capacity for nuclear energy was 380 million kW. It is predicted that if the transition to renewable energy continues, the installation capacity of wind energy will surpass that of nuclear energy in 5 years. Yet the reality of the market's high expansion rate makes it likely that wind power capacity will surpass nuclear power capacity in the next 3 years.

Renewable energy is making impressive strides outside of Japan. Japan needs to break off from the anti-renewable energy propaganda expressed by the "Nuclear Energy Taliban."