Japan lifts blackout warning, but supply outlook shaky

The Ministry of Economy and Industry lifted the alert for possible power cuts late Wednesday morning, as sunny weather allowed the resumption of solar energy production. The ministry, however, called for conservation efforts to continue as some coal-fired plants will remain offline for a few more months.

While Japan aims to achieve carbon neutrality by 2050, it still relies heavily on fossil fuels. As Japan strives to develop renewable energy, the government is seeking to restart more nuclear power plants, although public safety concerns are high after the Fukushima disaster.

On March 16, a magnitude 7.4 earthquake off the northeast coast killed four people, damaged buildings and caused power outages that peaked at 2 million homes in Tokyo and eight other regions. .

A subsidiary of Tokyo Electric Power Company Holdings said late Tuesday that conservation efforts had largely lifted the threat of blackouts.

Tokyo’s Haneda International Airport has turned off lights and air conditioning in its terminals. Tokyo’s SkyTree Tower canceled its nighttime lights on Tuesday. Amusement parks and some businesses have switched to backup generators.

Tuesday’s power crisis was considered one of the worst since the government staged planned blackouts in the Tokyo area for 10 days after the Fukushima Daiichi cave-ins in 2011.

(Copyright 2022 by The Associated Press. All rights reserved.)

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