Japan Press Weekly
[Advanced search]
Past issues
Special issues
Fact Box
Feature Articles
Mail to editor
Mail magazine
HOME  > Past issues  > 2023 December 13 - 19  > Japan yet again receives ‘Fossil of the Day’ award for its reluctance to seriously tackle climate change
> List of Past issues
Bookmark and Share
2023 December 13 - 19 [SOCIAL ISSUES]

Japan yet again receives ‘Fossil of the Day’ award for its reluctance to seriously tackle climate change

December 13, 2023

Japan on December 7 received the “Fossil of the Day” award during the 2023 UN Climate Change Conference (COP28) held in UAE, for its weak stance toward implementing global warming countermeasures. The environmental NGO Climate Action Network (CAN), the award presenter, says that it sees “straight through” Japan’s “attempts to extend the life of coal and gas domestically and throughout Asia”.

The Japanese government together with Tokyo Electric Power Co. (TEPCO) are working on developing the technology of hydrogen and ammonia co-firing with fossil fuels. Prime Minister Kishida Fumio in his speech given on December 1 at COP28 claimed that the technology would contribute to global decarbonization and did not promise to scrap coal-fired power plants in Japan.

Economy Minister Nishimura Yasutoshi, commenting on the Fossil of the Day award, complained, “They do not understand the advances in Japanese technology” (Dec.6). Japan Business Federation (Keidanren) Chair Tokura Masakazu said, “Our country should be extremely proud of our CO2 emissions reduction results” (Dec.4).

Japan predicts that the reduction rate of CO2 emissions by the ammonia co-firing technology will be 20% in 2030 and 60% in 2035. Japan intends to just be in a position to “challenge” net-zero emissions by 2050.

In Europe, already three countries abolished coal-fired power generation. Nineteen countries decided to phase out coal burning, and eighteen of them will shut down coal-fired power plants by 2035. In contrast, Japan clings to a technology whose feasibility is still uncertain. It stands out in sharp opposition to the rest of the world.

According to Dr. Fatih Birol of the International Energy Agency (IEA), in order to hold the rise in global surface temperature to below 1.5 degrees Celsius in 2030, the international community should triple the use of renewables, reduce methane emissions from the fossil fuel industry by 75%, and stop building new coal power plants.

Past related article:
> Japan given 'Fossil Award' 3 times in row [November 22, 2022]

> List of Past issues
  Copyright (c) Japan Press Service Co., Ltd. All right reserved