Japanese prefecture Fukushima has unveiled plans to transform into a renewable energy hub. This comes almost a decade after one of the world’s worst nuclear accidents in history took place at the site.
Located in the north-east of Japan, Fukushima has gone down in history books after the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant experienced a triple meltdown in March 2011.
The historic accident was prompted by a devastating earthquake and tsunami that sent massive amounts of radiation into the atmosphere. It displaced over 150,000 residents at the time.
Now the local government aims to execute an ambitious project in which the region will be powered by 100% renewable energy by 2040, as per The Guardian. The prefecture is currently running under 40% renewable energy today.
The project is capped at 300nm yen or USD2.75bn. Funds for the project will be sponsored by the government-owned Development Bank of Japan and Mizuho Bank. 11 solar and 10 wind farms will be established in Fukushima’s abandoned farmlands and around its mountains. The project is expected to be completed by the end of March 2024.
Japanese prime minister Shinzo Abe has expressed his support for nuclear energy as an alternative to fossil fuel. The country’s conservative government has lobbied for the revival of dormant reactors. However, Japan’s environment minister has openly spoken out against this.
Environment minister Shinjiro Koizumi previously called for the removal of Japan’s nuclear reactors to avoid accidents similar to that in Fukushima. “We will be doomed if we allow another nuclear accident to occur. We never know when we’ll have an earthquake.”