Just in front of the Japanese Prime Minister’s Office, where anti-nuclear power demonstrations have been taking place every Friday, 1000 people gathered together for a pro-nuclear power campaign on September 25th (organized by the of National Council for the Promotion of Nuclear Power).
In this rally, the representative, Mr. Takao Furuyama of the National Council for the Promotion of Nuclear Power pleaded, “To generate thermal electric power, we cannot help but rely upon the import of oil. We have not seriously considered our national security. It will become an issue after the government shuts down the nuclear power plants throughout country.” The Party leader, Shugaku Tsuiki of Happiness Realization Party, also stated, “Stopping nuclear power plants will cause our electricity bills to go up which will have a negative impact on Japan’s GDP.”
The 1000 participants chanted, “No one has died from the Fukushima nuclear power plant!” and “The anti-nuclear power demonstrations are wrong!” “Wind electricity is unreliable.” There were also signs and banners that said, “Nuclear power is necessary for our economy!” and “Halting nuclear energy will double your power bill.”
After the rally, Mr. Furuyama and Hakuun Kurokawa, the chairman of the Policy Research Council for the Happiness Realization Party, visited the Cabinet Office. They submitted an official statement of claims to Prime Minister Noda, demanding the following three points:
- Reverse the power policy decision for the zero nuclear energy, and maintain and promote nuclear power generation,
- Restart the nuclear power plants as soon as the engineers confirm the safety checks.
- Establish a policy for a nuclear fuel cycle and realize efficient provisions for energy.
When Kurokawa presented the statement to the Cabinet, he stated, “We have heard from the factory mangers that they have had to fire part-time workers, because the company took measures to save electricity. However, the victims of this policy could not speak up on account of the flooded denuclearization media coverage.
The Noda government compiled the administration’s strategy into a plan that phases out nuclear power by 2030. However, the Cabinet is wavering on whether or not they should commit to this policy, which they demonstrated by postponing their endorsement on this decision.
However, due to the increased costs and lower stability of renewable energy, compared to that of nuclear power, this nuclear free policy will cause a big burden on the industrial world.
Also, too much reliance on thermal energy will possibly create an energy security risk since it is not realistic to assume that Japan can secure a route to import fossil fuel. This situation will become a matter of concern in the current international situation.
Anti-nuclear campaigners and the mass media, that have been highly publicizing the above issue, are trying to ignore the facts. Their attitude should be criticized for the sake of Japan’s future. They are not acting responsibly. Prime Minister Noda should seriously listen to pro-nuke voices, and the media should also give them some latitude, as much space as was given for the anti-nuclear demonstrations.