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Gov't asks Kansai to cut energy consumption by 10%

25 Comments

The government said Wednesday it would expand efforts to restrict energy use to the western Kansai region to cope with lower power generation capacity amid public objections to restarting nuclear reactors.

The government will request a 10% cut on energy consumption for major power consumers, such as factories in the Kansai region surrounding the commercial hub of Osaka, from next Monday through September 22.

However, the energy saving policy for the Kansai will not come with fines for those who do not meet the guidelines, as is the case for restrictions in the Kanto and Tohoku regions.

The step was deemed necessary to avoid the risk of blackouts during peak summer power demand, with only 18 out of Japan's 54 nuclear reactors online amid local objections to their restart after scheduled inspections.

Before March 11 Japan derived around 30% of its energy requirements from nuclear power.

Public anxiety about the use of nuclear power has intensified after the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant was damaged by the March earthquake and tsunami, triggering the worst nuclear disaster in 25 years.

© Agence France-Presse

©2021 GPlusMedia Inc.

25 Comments
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"According to companies' website, Yoshinoya sets it at 28 C while Skylark sets it 25 C."

Yeah, funny, isn't it?

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

We'd see customers yelling about how restaurant chains like Yoshinoya and Skylark keep the temperature of their dining rooms at a teeth-chattering 22 degrees, regardless of the outside weather.

Strange..

According to companies' website, Yoshinoya sets it at 28 C while Skylark sets it 25 C.

http://www.yoshinoya.com/release.html http://www.skylark.co.jp/company/news/pdf/2011/save.pdf

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

The current power saving issue is only about saving power during peak time. So as for myself I have no problem switching on my air con at full blast at 8:00 pm!!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

ThonTaddeo,

I don't deny the singular comfort of an air-conditioned room in the middle of a Japanese summer.

It's the blatant waste that irritates the hell out of me. Without having a shred of evidence to back the following statement up, I'd venture to guess the 10% cut could be achieved if people would simply stop pissing energy away through frivolous use, like the examples I mentioned in my earlier post.

No, 22 degrees for a restaurant is not appropriate. I shouldn't have to wear a jacket to eat lunch in the middle of a summer day. I shouldn't have to drape a blanket over my child in order to visit the local doctor's office. I shouldn't have to order a hot drink to endure a movie theater. I certainly shouldn't be able to tell what's on sale in an electronics shop just by glancing through the open doorway from the sidewalk. Yet, all of these have been the norm throughout Japan for the past 10 years I've lived here.

Nevermind the immediate financial rewards of closing a few doors and turning the thermostat to 25, it seems that even a massive natural disaster knocking out the electricity-producing capability of 1/5th of the country isn't enough to pursuade people to be smarter about how they use energy in Japan.

People waste an offensive amount of energy here, and balk at the slightest suggestion to scale things back a bit. 10% is nothing in the grand scheme of things, but you'd think people were being asked to turn over their laptops and cell phones, by the reaction of some Japanese, particularly in Kansai.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I am doing my bit...brought my daughter back to Australia for a month. Temperature 10 degrees or more lower and so is my blood pressure.Win.Win. Kansai ppl will look at this request and do nothing about it. My school was ordered to keep the AC at 28 but nobody was following orders.The businesses and restaurants are the ones who waste most energy.Until Japanese build proper houses that are properly insulated and have double glazing etc , everyone will continue spending a fortune on inefficient heating and cooling strategies.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

a teeth-chattering 22 degrees,

You misspelled "pleasant". ^_^;

Air conditioning has plenty of benefits. You don't need to take two showers a day; you don't need to change clothes multiple times because of the sweat; you buy less deodorant, etc., etc. Not to mention the big jump in productivity that comes with having cooler air -- less lethargy means sharper minds, fewer mistakes on the job, and probably less overtime as not-exhausted workers should be able to finish their jobs efficiently.

I agree with Cos and Kronos. There's no reason to force people in Kansai to masochistically endure hotter indoor temperatures out of some misguided sense of shared mutual suffering. It sounds like something Tokyo mayor Ishihara would implement so that he could revel in the shared privations of the WWII era.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Power use in Kansai today was 85% of available capacity. And it wasn't even hot. Capacity will go down as more reactors are shut down for annual maintenance, so Kansaijin will have to cut usage or face blackouts. You've got to feel sorry for companies who have just relocated operations here to avoid power shortages.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Some of Kansai is trying ... Im in Shiga and the shopping mall in my town has the ac set at 30 and half the lights off. People are trying but to different degrees. So don't say that Kansai doesn't care.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I don't see why. Sorry there was no eartquake nor tsunami nor anything concerning Kansai. The shortage is 100% caused by poor management by electricity company. Yes, it's a sort of blackmail to force us to accept long term nuclear projects. I think that all of us in Kansai should stop paying our electricity bills for 3 months as a protest for the Kepco policy.

Then, our energy savings would do nothing for Tohoku. Fines ? Make them pay by the madman in charge. All he does is rebuilding stuff to be destroyed in next tsunami, letting a small radioactive contamination of 1% of Japanese produce become a national food disaster, damaging Japanese produce and produce image and selling power for the next 30 years. Not it's not the shoganai earthquake, it's how they deal with it. Government should pay compensation for the decline of all our businesses, even here in Kansai.

Pesonnally, I cannot save more. Or I stop my fridge, eat my food raw and use only the battery powered lamps. Now tell me why I should live like in the jungle and see all those neons, pachinkos, etc, from my windows ?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Patrick Smash: Good point, it seems if the people get tired of having the power cuts then they will have to restart the nuclear plants...

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Come on guys. If Kansai does not have to do this, they should not be doing it.

Government is not imposing fines so this implies it is not mandatory. Not every part of Japan has to share the pain if they do not have to .

Kansai is a very important commercial region. There are many businesses in the region already, together with new ones coming in from Kanto after the earthquake. An unnecessary power savings will cripple businesses as well.

If they have to do it - based on corroborative evidencem then fine, they should do it.

But they should not be doing it because "it looks bad since they are not doing it".

1 ( +1 / -0 )

They can start by pulling the plug on that giant crab near Dotombori.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

LFRAgain, amen. Theres always talk but no action in this country.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

However, the energy saving policy for the Kansai will not come with fines for those who do not meet the guidelines, as is the case for restrictions in the Kanto and Tohoku regions.

Now this implies it is not necessary for Kansai to have this energy saving. Is this more of isshou ni ganbarimashou stuff or are they trying to scare people off so they can keep the reactors open?

I mean, come on, if Kansai does not have to do this, they should not be doing it. There is no rule that says everywhere in Japan has to have energy saving even if they do not have it.

Besides it is bad for businesses as well. Those businesses that were thinking of moving some of the operations to Kansai now have to re-think their plans. They might just go out of Japan be done with it.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Mr. Smith, this here is not an article about the workings of hybrid cars so please try to stay on-topic for a change. Thank you.

-5 ( +0 / -5 )

Skeptical Hippo: "Gov't should restrict all 1 million Prius owners from driving their car on electricity."

Do you think the cars are plugged into the grid? Cars contain a little something called an engine -- so long as the 'generator' in the car is running it produces its own electricity, but like the electric bikes many an obasan ride up the hills.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

However, the energy saving policy for the Kansai will not come with fines for those who do not meet the guidelines, as is the case for restrictions in the Kanto and Tohoku regions.

Where are the fines in Kanto and Tohoku? No one is policing it.... all bark and no bite..

1 ( +1 / -0 )

I am requesting that the Japanese government remove their citizens away from harmful radioactive places.

Do you think that will happen?

2 ( +2 / -0 )

People in Western Japan don't seem to really care about the situation up in Tohoku. Heck, people in Tokyo don't seem to care a whit either. As long as Starbucks is open and the trains run on time.

I mean, if they did, we'd see more people in Kanto, Kansai, Chugoku, and Kyushu getting angry at retailers that leave their front doors propped wide open during business hours with the air conditioning blasting away.

We'd see customers yelling about how restaurant chains like Yoshinoya and Skylark keep the temperature of their dining rooms at a teeth-chattering 22 degrees, regardless of the outside weather.

And we'd see more people taking small, private businesses to task for doing exactly what the big boys do as far as wasting electricity with reckless abandon.

People suck. Yeah, I'm feeling a little snarky today.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

Skeptical Hippo.

Prius has hybrid models that also use gas. I think you mean the Nissan Leaf owners. Nissan hasn't had much success with the Leaf so far. It would suck to have an electric car right now and not be able to charge it.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Probably just scare tactics to try and sway public opinion about re-starting more reactors

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Gov't should restrict all 1 million Prius owners from driving their car on electricity.

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

Miyagidad:

It is 50 Hz (Kanto) and 60 Hz (Kansai), not MHz. And it is not transformers, which are connecting the 2 different frequency grids (transformers can not change the frequency), but there are power stations, which have so-called inverters that can do the trick. Although quite some effort.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Perhaps it is time to take a long hard look at the energy grid here. Western and Eastern Japan run on different current, 50Mhz and 60Mhz with just a handful of transformers that connect the two. Thus any surge in demand or heaven forbid a CRISIS might occur then electricity can not be supplied from the other region to compensate.

In a country with a cocktail of natural challenges (earthquakes, heatwaves, heavy snow, volcanoes and typhoons) one would think risk management would be at the fore - not the case. A 'just in time' delivery system in the energy sector doesn't make sense at the best of times.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

it's possible since people are already used to hot temp inside supermarkets, discount stores...! Shall appreciate open-sky shopping streets (shotengai).

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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