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7 June, 2021

JEMA Proposes that Nuclear Power Be Maintained at a Certain Scale

On May 13, the Japan Electrical Manufacturers' Association (JEMA) submitted a proposal to the Advisory Committee for Natural Resources and Energy, under the Agency for Natural Resources and Energy (ANRE), on the issuance of the next Strategic Energy Plan by the national government.

Regarding the positioning of nuclear power, it says that adjustable power sources will be necessary in order to achieve carbon neutrality, namely, low- and no-carbon power that can be baseload. From the viewpoint of ensuring economic rationality, nuclear power will have to be maintained at a certain level into the future as well.

The proposal also says a clear policy is required on the matter of new and replacement reactors so as to accelerate decarbonization in the energy sector.

Furthermore, the proposal says that nuclear power can contribute to meeting more diverse needs, such as future decarbonization through the development of small reactors as power sources for small-scale grids not requiring substantial initial investment, and future reactors—including high-temperature gas-cooled reactors (HTGRs)—for a range of industrial uses, including hydrogen production.

Thus, in addition to clarifying the national policy on such future reactors, national support needs to be continued and strengthened for R&D and demonstration experiments currently being carried out on those reactors, given their lengthy development times.

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