Japan to pledge 20% greenhouse gas cut

Toshiba promotes its role in the Miyako Island Energy Management System.

Kyoko Hasegawa, AFP

Japan will promise to cut its greenhouse gas emissions by 20 per cent from 2013 levels ahead of a global summit on climate change this year, a report says.

The government will likely announce the new target at the Group of Seven (G7) summit in June in Germany, the leading business daily Nikkei reported, citing unnamed government sources.

In a separate report, Kyodo News said Tokyo will set a target of cutting gas emissions ‘by at least 20 per cent by 2030, from 2005 levels.’

Japan is one of the few leading polluters that has not yet declared a target on emission cuts, as the world works towards a new framework for combating climate change, to be finalised at December’s COP 21 gathering in Paris.

A total of 33 countries – including the No.2 emitter the United States, the No.3 emitter the European Union, and Russia, ranked fifth – submitted their reduction goals to the UN secretariat by the end of last month.

The US has pledged to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 26-28 per cent over 2005 levels within the next decade, while the EU said it will cut its pollution by 40 per cent by 2030 from 1990 levels.

Russia said it could drive down emissions by up to 30 per cent compared to 1990 levels, subject to conditions.

In earlier rounds of climate talks, Tokyo pledged it would reduce its greenhouse gas output by 25 per cent by 2020 from 1990 levels.

But that target was slashed to a 3.8 per cent cut form 2005 levels in the aftermath of the 2011 Fukushima nuclear disaster, which led to stopping the country’s entire nuclear stable.

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