"Solar generation, for example, is twice as expensive per kilowatt hour in Japan as it is in Europe because of the limited amount of suitable land and the cost of construction for solar farms."
"Japan also lacks a national electricity grid. The nation's power supply is generally divided into 10 service areas, each with its own transmission network, which means there is limited capability, for example, to send solar energy produced in the south of the country to the north."
Opposition from powerful fishing lobby to offshore wind.
"Major power companies are still securing power grids to prepare for re-operation of nuclear plants at some future time," said Koki Yoshino, executive officer of the firm. The result, he said, is that power plant projects for JRE and other solar and wind power generators have stalled.
Japan lacks raw materials needed for industry. They don't have much oil, coal, ores, anything really. And the little coal they have is of bad quality. These power plants will be dependent on foreign imports, probably from China. Tying your energy sector to foreign import so much is a risky move. One international dispute will wake up Japan from their dream of coal powered economy.
And that coal spreads more radioactive waste than nuclear reactors as well.
Nuclear is one of the safest and cleanest energy producing technologies we have that can produce the amount of energy we require.
While I'm not familiar with subsidies in the Japanese electricity markets, I didn't read anything about a coal subsidy in either article...but I did see this:
>In addition, offshore farms benefit from a feed-in-tariff price of 36 yen per kilowatt-hour, which is double the price for solar energy, and more than the 20 yen fetched by onshore wind generators. "You can make sufficient profit," said an industry insider.
WTF - it's an article about WIND... did you even read it? https://asia.nikkei.com/Business/Business-trends/Offshore-wind-farms-in-Japan-turn-viable-with-new-law
Never mind, this is just way too stupid. Stay in school kid, don't drop out.
B Y E
I'm not trolling you, this was your comment:
>You're missing an important point. The coal plants are government subsidies, while the wind is now privately funded.
>Should be the other way around...
You're the one saying "coal plants are government subsidies" without any supporting info. Approving the construction of coal powerplants is different than subsidizing coal power plants.
Edit: fixed autocorrect
This is discouraging. No matter how hard the average person can work to help fight climate change, it feels pointless when foreign governments go ahead and pull shit like burning the Amazon or building more coal plants. The people with power do far more damage and have far more potential to help solve this crisis, but they look for whatever will get them elected in the next cycle.
Ice Ages didn't begin/end over 5°C, that's rubbish.
You guys should try researching some opposing viewpoints before religiously defending this "belief". Because the science behind it is very [suspect](http://www.climate-skeptic.com/temperature_history/) when you dig a little deeper than politics.
The global average temperature difference between the Ice Age and pre-industrial age is 5°C. Look, the nice thing about the IPCC report is that they are peer-reviewed, some of the reviewers are climato-sceptics like you and the authors replied to every single comment they made. And all of these discussions are publicly available, so why don't you look for it and see their answer to your theories? They thought about the sun and it was factored in, same for the milhankovitch cycles, they can explain the plateau in the 50s, they know CO2 fertilizes plants, everything you want.
Thanks but I'm good. Even if the science it 100% accurate and 100% non-political, I'm still not bothered by sea level rising slightly over the next century.
The CA beaches still look exactly the same as they did 35 years ago, beachfront property is not being swallowed up. Even Florida continues to build in the Keys without reservation.
Even if this is a problem, it is one that can be solved by innovation, not taxation.
Tbh I also don't care that much about sea level rising, although it's gonna cost a lot of money to some coastal cities. I also understand if you don't care that much about biodiversity, ecosystems etc. But crop yield will decrease, water availability too and that is very bad news. You might be ok in the US but not in central America, and you'll get lots of migrants. Globally it's gonna be a major driver of geopolitical tension, and the economy will suffer quite a lot.
Ok but what if the Earth suddenly begins cooling drastically due to Solar cycles- then you all will really wish for a greenhouse effect.
I'm just trying to take a more rational perspective instead of the apocalyptic/savior perspective thinking you can control cosmic and planetary forces with taxes and socialism.
Yes it's definitely strange, I rule nothing out unless it can be explained by human nature and greed.
However, there is some little known science to my previous comment, [Grand Solar Minimum](https://www.zerohedge.com/health/earth-about-enter-30-year-mini-ice-age-sun-hibernates-scientist-warns)
Of course, and I also predicted you would desperately cling to that statement as if it refutes the reality of the Sun being the main factor in climate change.
As if rising sea levels is a threat to humanity, the base argument is ridiculous.
If you melt an ice in a cup of water, does the cup overflow..?
Do you seriously not know that most of that ice is currently sitting on land and not in the ocean? When it melts and flows into the ocean, the sea level rises.
Like, this is just so far beyond ignorant it's hard to believe you're not just a really bad troll.
So what? Why are you guys so scared of a little water? Not like we can't build higher or underwater, not like people can't migrate away from coastal zone. Climate change is the least of the threats to humanity.
Humans adapt to change, and I stand by the fact that more Carbon is good for the environment.
Climate change amplifies all other threats. It means more natural disasters, more migration, which means more wars, more spreading of epidemics, more political and financial disasters. More carbon might be fine for the environment, but it's not better for those of us who live in the changing environment.
Nukes can be made safer despite Fukushima, the question is, is it worth it? The Japanese have opted out, via their "group" minded culture. Coal produces CO2 in abundance, yet the greens rail against natural gas (except Putin's) and target fracking. This is probably a campaign funded internationally either by Steyer, Soros, and Vlad, who pockets the sales of Russky nat gas. Finally, the greens wuv to bitch about saving the earth, yet most are weak sisters on focusing on the replacement of the dirty with the clean. Engineering always takes a back seat, to their saving the earth, because, frankly, they care more about the earth, than people.
Thanks, however, its not much in the way of sense-making, so much as seeing oligarchs, politicians, and others, seeking to use, climate change, as a power grab. They now speak only of saving the planet, from the carbon monster, and never speak of saving our species, or switching to better energy sources. This is because they'd have to actually identify and point to clean energy technology, as a physical items to be installed. However, when it's all speeches, like what Greta is set to do, or declarations of becoming carbon-free by 2030, these people never ever have to produce a single thing! Just produce words are made to get people to react emotionally.
You have to go deep in the weeds (unless one is just in it for the virtue -signal?), and make replacement tech, for the dirty. Anything else, will ensure whatever movement of politician gets the axe, because the people will react adversely (very adversely) to blackouts, etc.
This is a situation where the EU and other governments that are making progress on decarbonisation need to put diplomatic pressure on Japan to change their strategy. Japan is a leading economy so has the resources to move away from coal now and therefore has no excuse.
Unintended consequence? Of an earthquake? Sorry that’s just amusing phrasing imo.
But nobody wants another nuclear plant in Japan. Look at a fault line map. Look at how many earthquakes they have per year. Look at the type of faults they have. The fault that caused the tsunami after the Fukushima earthquake made the coastline shift half a football field out to sea.
I wish they’d get interested in renewables but honestly if it gets them off nuclear they should be burning as much coal as they need. Our planet can’t handle more Fukushimas.
otakumanDo A.I. dream with Virtual sheep?7 months ago
The real problem was the faulty design that led the disaster to happen.
For example, the backup diesel generators were on a basement, vulnerable to flooding - and the sea pumps that were supposed to cool them were only 4 meters above sea level. The batteries that were supposed to provide power in the case of a blackout were also rendered inoperable by flooding.
[It was a design riddled with flaws.](https://www.resilience.org/stories/2016-03-11/the-legacy-of-the-fukushima-nuclear-disaster-analysis/)
Additionally, several books have been published about it, [and a major culprit is high management](https://thebulletin.org/2014/03/five-assessments-of-the-fukushima-disaster/); from the link:
> What must be admitted—very painfully—is that this was a disaster “Made in Japan.”… Its fundamental causes are to be found in the ingrained conventions of Japanese culture: our reflexive obedience; our reluctance to question authority; our devotion to "sticking with the program"; our groupism; and our insularity. …With such a powerful mandate, nuclear power became an unstoppable force, immune to scrutiny by civil society. Its regulation was entrusted to the same government bureaucracy responsible for its promotion. At a time when Japan’s self-confidence was soaring, a tightly knit elite with enormous financial resources had diminishing regard for anything "not invented here." …This conceit was reinforced by the collective mindset of Japanese bureaucracy, by which the first duty of any individual bureaucrat is to defend the interests of his organization.
EDIT: But yeah, if you count bureaucracy and monetary/reputation interests as an unstoppable force, then nuclear energy is too dangerous for them to handle responsibly. In other words, don't put a gun in the hands of a child.
1 person died from Fukushima.
2 people die from a single windmill fire in my country, you can see the video on YouTube.
Millions of large, endangered birds die from windmills too.
The newer reactors shut down without issues in Fukushima, only the oldest reactor had a meltdown.
I would rather have 100 Fukushima's than have the Amazon and Coral reefs becomes lifeless deserts due to climate change.
But another Fukushima won't happen for the same reason another Chernobyl or Three Miles Island has not and will not happen. We learn from our mistakes and improve technology.
I am 100% in favour of renewables, I actually pay extra to have locally sourced wind energy at home, but the fear of nuclear energy is literally destroying our planet, even though it is the safest and cleanest energy source we have, by far.
" Japan now plans to build as many as 22 new coal-burning power plants — one of the dirtiest sources of electricity — at 17 different sites in the next five years, just at a time when the world needs to slash carbon dioxide emissions to fight global warming."
A decade after Fukushima and with offshore wind at dirt low prices and this is the best answer they have?
Maybe there aren't great strategical thinkers left in Japan and basically CYA solutions are implemented, while renewables need the whole grid thought out together. This is a country with two asynchronous grids. Makes no sense and harms renewables deployment.
Overbuild and curtail or better yet, use excess to produce Hydrogen. It's not rocket science.
Germany will be using offshore wind to install up to 5GW electrolizer capacity.
Nuke's not flexible and it's expensive and reliably dangerous especially in earth/seaquake prone Japan.
Overbuild and curtail is extra expense. And still doesn't remove need for backup. So it's quite expensive.
Hydrogen production based on overgeneration would be the obvious way to go but this is moving pretty slowly worldwide. Can't fault Japan for not being 20 years ahead, I suppose.
Nuclear is as flexible as any coal power plant, but mainly Japan doesn't need its nuclear to be flexible. At \~33% of total consumption it was fine even with zero flexibility. Japan obviously won't be 100% nuclear, but using its existing fleet to cancel the need for new coal/gas power plants is a no-brainer.
>Overbuild and curtail is extra expense
Depends on the price. Compared to nukes it's generally cheaper.
>Nuclear is as flexible as any coal power plant
So very little to very expensive flexibility to anything that isn't running at 80 to 100% 24/7.
Onshore was already cheaper per installed capacity (should be about half now), and offshore may get there, but overbuild and curtail is something else.
I don't think Japan has much onshore though. Offshore is their best bet if they want to use it.
I agree, their solar irradiation is quite low. Storage (be it PHS or H2) and demand response is better than just curtailing (or worse than curtailing: paid curtailing). That said curtailing can still be economically viable if the energy is cheap enough, or I should say that much cheaper than alternatives.
Offshore wind where there's good potential, coupled with H2/synfuel production looks very solid to me, if we finally deploy the H2 production to go along with it. As it is right now with feeding into a grid that has its own shifting demand, it's not very good. Better than onshore but still. And I think onshore is a huge waste in many places it's used in today. Texas, UK, these are great places, but there's lots of places with very unproductive turbines too. Germany is full of wind turbines everywhere yet only the ones up north are really productive. It's quite telling, when the overall country-wide CF of wind is below 25% despite the turbines in the north being well over 33%.
Superconductors field is very fluid and fruitful these days. One thing is for sure, it can only get better, while fission is a deadend.
"Room Temperature Superconductor Breakthrough at Oak Ridge National Laboratory "
"Closely Spaced Hydrogen Atoms Could Facilitate Superconductivity in Ambient Conditions"
Well then fuck windmills then LETS START DOING FUSION. This stuff would be a incredible breakthrough. This stuff would be better than YBCO. This fucking stuff can be cooled down by cold air or CO2.
Ow wait they simulated it. Have they tested it in practice tough?, Can it be mass produced. Graphine isn't doing so well yet in many applications (its used for some already though).
Nuclear isn't dangerous if you follow what the engineers tell you to do.
Fukushima failed because money trumped good sense. The plant was supposed to be shutdown, but money got in the way and its life was extended. So then the seawall was supposed to be made taller, but no one wanted to spend the money on that either.
It was 100% a preventable incident.
That statement is a a superficial truism. People are involved in basically everything that affects us, the bad and the good. Of course the mistakes will involve people, as will the successes.
However, just because people are involved, doesn't make something destined for failure. The human race has been dealing with itself for as long as we've existed. In the process we've created a lot of systems, institutions, and rules for dealing with the failure scenarios that arise out of humans being involved in things.
Disasters happen because people make mistakes, but at the same time we tend to improve with mistakes too. Even with Fukushima; given the risk of what happened, and the cost to manage the outcome we have much better numbers that these companies could use to understand the costs of their decisions. Building sea-wall would have cost them much less than what it has and will cost them to deal with the existing failures, which means in the future when faced with such a decision we will have data showing that it's much cheaper to make a small capital investment to build a wall, rather than hope that it won't get too bad.
What more, this is an industry that is very sensitive to public perception. People in nuclear know about these disasters, and their livelihood depends on ensuring such things can not happen again.
>That statement is a a superficial truism.
I don't think you know what a truism is. In fact it is the opposite because it is not obvious that preventable mistakes are not preventable.
>However, just because people are involved, doesn't make something destined for failure.
That's not what I said.
A preventable mistake is not preventable in a system because of corruption, laziness, incompetence, unforeseen situations, poor system design, and just plain old screwing up. When an employee at MacDonald's screws up your order, the stakes are very low. In a nuclear plant we try much harder not to make mistakes but they still happen. Once in a while the mistake will be catastrophic.
You even admit later in your comment that mistakes are made.
So on top of being incredibly expensive, nuclear power accidents will continue to happen. Infrequently, and maybe at an acceptable rate given the consequences of the alternatives. But they will happen. It is your fantasy that it is possible to create a mistake-free system.
>> Preventable incidents aren't preventable because there are people involved.
> Truism: A statement that is obviously true or that is often presented as true
Unfortunately for you, I actually spent a bit of time picking out the appropriate word here.
Of course people are involved in preventable incidents. That's because people are involved in *all* incidents. This is why your statement is a truism.
> That's not what I said.
That's how I read it. If you meant something else, you didn't do a very good job of communicating it.
> A preventable mistake is not preventable in a system because of corruption, laziness, incompetence, unforeseen situations, poor system design, and just plain old screwing up. When an employee at MacDonald's screws up your order, the stakes are very low. In a nuclear plant we try much harder not to make mistakes but they still happen. Once in a while the mistake will be catastrophic.
> You even admit later in your comment that mistakes are made.
My point was that your statement added nothing to the discussion. Yes, mistakes were made, and obviously said mistakes were made by people, because that's the only entity that can reasonably make mistakes in this context. My follow-on point was that it's possible to learn from mistakes to improve our ability to do things, but I guess that one was too hard to respond to.
> So on top of being incredibly expensive, nuclear power accidents will continue to happen. Infrequently, and maybe at an acceptable rate given the consequences of the alternatives. But they will happen.
That's not enough of a reason to throw away a century of work on a technology that is able to draw power from the very fabric of reality.
People fall from wind turbines, but I still support wind power after all. The cost-benefit analysis simply shots too many benefits for nuclear power, and the fact that a small, very vocal segment disliked it is meaningless in the long term.
> It is your fantasy that it is possible to create a mistake-free system.
It's simple reality that people learn from mistakes. We will never live in a mistake-free system, but if you want to live in a world where your terror of mistakes prevents you from doing things then you're going to have a bad time.
Humans remain the weakest link, and nuclear will be unsafe as long as humans run it.
There isn't a single country in the world where I feel confident an energy supplier wouldn't cut corners if they think they can get away with it.
Most nations regulate and control this industry in a way that makes it very difficult for one person, or even a small group of people to make nuclear "unsafe." I have a friend who inspects our local nuclear plants for compliance with a wide range of regulations as a government agent, and we seem to be doing quite well with the approach. Simply put, it would cost them much more bribe the many levels of checks and balances than what they could save by cutting a few corners, not to mention the price associated with the risk of failure.
Fukushima was the conjunction of several failure modes; very old design, insufficient disaster modeling, extremely powerful and well established regional energy monopolies, and a top-down culture that discourages dissent. Even with all that, the overall scope of the failure was nowhere near as bad as some people on this subreddit like to claim it was. Most of the detractors of the technology tend to do so less because there's any actual risk, and more because they are fans of other technologies, or even more likely, because they watched a few youtube videos and read a few blogs by such fans.
Very few people that actually understand the various safeguards and efforts made to prevent such disasters agree with the sentiment you present.
Yeah, absolutely zero sense, even for replacing old coal plants. I can see India with cheap labor and local coal wanting to keep building these dirty things (paying the price in health problems), but Japan??
At this point a gas turbine that could be converted to hydrogen would be a much better option. US is drowning in excess NG from fracking.
Massive investment in energy efficiency, plus big investment in renewable energies and and demand-response, plus a little bit of investment in thermal and electric energy storage would more than do the job, for cheaper, with more resilience...