Towards a cleaner future
Japan has the world’s third-largest economy and a population of around 127 million. It has limited energy resources of its own and has long been a major importer of fuel.
Reliance on imported energy has driven Japanese companies to develop ever more efficient technologies, including electronic goods and motor vehicles, and many are global leaders in energy efficiency.
Nuclear power was an important contributor to energy supply from the 1970s until a big earthquake and tsunami led to the Fukushima nuclear accident in March 2011. The subsequent shutdown of nuclear reactors across the country led to an increase in fuel imports, and a rise in greenhouse gas emissions.
Japan was the world’s fifth-biggest emitter of CO2 in 2013. As part of the United Nations Paris Agreement on combating climate change, the government has set a target of reducing its greenhouse gas emissions by 26% from 2013 to 2030.
Faced with the challenge of curbing emissions while ensuring economic growth, the government is targeting a power generation mix for 2030 of 27% LNG, 26% coal, 22-24% renewables, 20-22% nuclear and 3% oil.
Sources: World Bank, IEA, Japan government, UN