Japan launches nationwide energy conservation campaign
The government aims to cut electric consumption by between 5% and 15% until September 7.
Electricity saving targets came into effect this week as Japan braces for a power shortfall over the summer. The government has asked households and businesses served by six utilities in central and western Japan to voluntarily cut electric consumption by between 5% and 15% compared to summer 2010 levels until September 7.
A 7% reduction target will also come into force in Japan's northernmost and more temperate island of Hokkaido on July 23.
The reductions are voluntary and there is no penalty for individual consumers and businesses that do not comply. The government, however, said it will order rolling blackouts if demand reaches 99% of supply.
The targets come as Japan ended almost two months without any functioning nuclear reactors with the recent restart of two reactors at the Ohi nuclear power plant.
Japan’s nuclear reactors have been offline since early May when the last of its 50 working reactors was shut down for a scheduled safety check. Before the Fukushima nuclear disaster last year, nuclear power had supplied one-third of Japan's electricity needs.