Junichiro Koizumi, Former Prime Minister of Japan
Naoto Kan, Former Prime Minister of Japan
Yui Kimura, Deputy Secretary of the Federation of Promotion of Zero-Nuclear Power and Renewable Energy (Genjiren)
Denouncing Europe’s Plan to Label Nuclear as Sustainable Energy Former Prime Ministers Junichiro Koizumi and Naoto Kan are two of Japan’s leading activists against the use of nuclear power as a form of clean and sustainable energy. The debate over the future of nuclear has taken on a more urgent turn as nations worldwide reconsider their energy mix, with an eye on achieving net-zero carbon emissions within decades amid a global shift away from heavily polluting fossil fuels.
The European Union (EU) now plans to label nuclear as a form of “green” investment, in a move that has not only drawn criticism from the leaders of member states like Germany and Austria but from around the world, including in Japan. Nowhere is the use of nuclear energy arguably more politically sensitive following the Fukushima Daiichi Power Plant accident of 2011.
Koizumi, who once supported nuclear, now says that the Fukushima accident offers the world grave lessons that the use of nuclear is not only impractical but dangerous. Earlier this month, 261 Japanese citizen groups submitted an open letter to the European Commission to oppose the plan.
They wrote that nuclear plants are the antithesis of sustainability given their production of radioactive waste, adding: “If the EU endorses investment in nuclear power, this will not only undermine confidence in the EU taxonomy but also leave a negative legacy for the future of the people in the EU and around the world”.
Koizumi and Kan, who have previously jointly addressed the FCCJ about their nuclear concerns, will come to the Club with Yui Kimura, Deputy Secretary of the Federation of Promotion of Zero-Nuclear Power and Renewable Energy (Genjiren), to explain why they oppose the EU’s plans to classify nuclear as a form of sustainable energy.
(Photos by Rodrigo Reyes Marin). To license images please visit: ZUMAPRESS