Japan to formulate “hydrogen society” strategy by year-end

Japan to formulate “hydrogen society” strategy by year-end

Shinzo Abe speaks to reporters at his office in Tokyo on Wednesday. The Japanese prime minister pushed for a policy to transform Japan into an emissions-free society. (Kyodo photo)

TOKYO – Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on Tuesday ordered ministers to formulate a basic strategy by the year-end for transforming Japan into an emissions-free “hydrogen society,” while calling for more efforts to introduce renewable energy.

The government is expected to create a system for speeding up construction of hydrogen stations with the aim of getting 40,000 hydrogen fuel-cell vehicles on the road by 2020, including through regulatory changes.

Abe also called for more cooperation among government offices to develop international hydrogen supply chains and introduce full-scale hydrogen power generation.

“The building of global hydrogen supply chains will be led by hydrogen power generation, which creates massive and stable demand,” Abe said.

Environment Minister Koichi Yamamoto separately told a press conference his ministry will begin drawing up a long-term strategy for significantly increasing renewable energy use by 2030.

The move comes as Japan seeks to strengthen measures to fight global warming based on the Paris Agreement on climate change.

By next spring, a team within the ministry will compile a roadmap for reforms to increase solar and biomass power generation as well as for introducing necessary technologies, Yamamoto said.

While Japan has already set a target of raising the ratio of its renewable energy power supply to 22% to 24% in 2030, roughly double the current figure, the ministry will consider whether it can raise that target under the new strategy.

Get full Bangkok Post printed newspaper experience on your digital devices with Bangkok Post e-newspaper. Try it out, it’s totally free for 7 days.