In Focus
IPP | Staff Reporter, Japan

Japanese nuclear restarts face intensified opposition

It's going to be fossil fuel for now in Japan.

“Not in my backyard,” say Japanese local communities, as they rally to oppose idle nuclear facilities that have applied to restart in Japan due to safety concerns.

This has led to a string of court injunctions and wavering support from prefecture governors, making it “highly uncertain” for these nuclear facilities to restart in a timely manner,” says Daniel Brenden, renewable energy analyst at BMI Research.

He reckons widespread public opposition to nuclear restarts will persist and weigh on a pronounced nuclear power rebound in Japan over the coming decade.

“Nuclear power will contribute a much smaller share of the power mix over the coming decade than it did pre-Fukushima,” says Brenden, predicting nuclear to contribute only 4.7% to total power generation by 2026, down from a previous forecast of 8%.

This means coal and gas-fired generation will continue to dominate Japan’s power generation mix till 2026, and the country will rely heavily on imported fossil fuel feedstock, especially considering an anticipated slowdown in renewable energy capacity growth.

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