The amount of carbon dioxide emitted in the year ended March 31 by ten big Japanese utility companies, including Tokyo Electric Power, reached a record level, as crude and fuel oil consumption surged after last year’s nuclear disaster.
The amount of emitted CO2 increased by 17 percent, to 439 million tons, according to a Bloomberg estimation. The fastest increase in emissions was from Kansai Electric Power Co. (40 percent more than the previous year, or 65 million tons). Kansai Electric is the company that was relying most on nuclear energy.
With only two nuclear reactors operational, out of the country’s 50 units, Japan is consuming huge amounts of liquefied natural gas, fuel oil and crude, to cover for the country’s energy needs.
Before last year’s natural disasters that triggered a catastrophe at the Fukushima plant, Japan generated nearly a third of its power needs from nuclear sources.
Currently, Japan is considering three options for nuclear energy in 2030: zero percent, 15 percent and as much as 25 percent of the country’s total electricity. About 70 percent of the people surveyed by Kyodo news agency in an opinion poll during last weekend said they wished Japan would give up completely nuclear energy.