Japan will cut reliance on nuclear power when it releases an updated energy plan as early as next year, reflecting public opposition and a recognition that current policy is unrealistic, three sources familiar with official thinking told Reuters. The move is expected to boost the country’s use of renewable energy, but will also likely cement its drive towards cheaper coal-fired generation following the 2011 Fukushima nuclear crisis and the shutdown of reactors. Public resistance to nuclear has remained strong in Japan, and a target by the pro-nuclear industry ministry for nuclear to provide about a fifth of the country’s electricity provoked widespread criticism when it was finalized in 2015. At the same time, only two of the country’s 42 reactors are currently operating following safety shutdowns, and the industry faces a raft of constraints including aging units and legal challenges.
Reuters 27th May 2016 read more »