HomeNewsClimate advocates call for action as Japan Energy Summit opens

Climate advocates call for action as Japan Energy Summit opens

As the Japan Energy Summit began in Tokyo, climate advocates from Asia opposed Japan’s support for fossil fuels and the promotion of technologies like ammonia co-firing. 

The summit, a key event for the Japanese LNG and gas industries, is under scrutiny for Japan’s role as a global financier of fossil fuels.

Environmental and social justice groups staged protests in the Philippines, Bangladesh, and Indonesia to criticize Japan’s policies which they claim position Asia as a dumping ground for harmful fossil gas projects under the guise of regional energy security.

Lidy Nacpil, coordinator of the Manila-based Asian Peoples’ Movement on Debt and Development, said the summit that “celebrates and bolsters fossil fuel companies when urgent climate action is needed is reprehensible.” 

She called for a rapid shift to solar and wind energy, which is crucial for replacing fossil fuel systems.

The International Energy Agency’s recent report supports this, highlighting the benefits of renewable energies over conventional fuels such as coal, natural gas, and oil.

Rere Christanto, Campaigns Director of WALHI Indonesia, noted Japan’s ongoing expansion of fossil fuel dependence in Asia. “

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The Japanese government and its corporations are entrenched in further coal, gas, and oil projects, instead of leading a just transition to renewable energy,” Christanto said.

Ian Rivera, national coordinator of the Philippine Movement for Climate Justice, said, “Every day Japan fails to act on the climate crisis, the threat becomes more severe.” 

“This Summit merely legitimizes the false solutions Japan is propagating,” he added. 

Flor Santos from the women’s group Oriang emphasized the impact of climate change. “As extreme weather events become more frequent each year, any promotion of the fossil fuel industry only sets back our progress,” she said.

In Dhahka, Shariff Jamil of Waterkeepers Bangladesh highlighted the environmental dangers of Japan’s fossil fuel agenda. 

“The Japan Energy Summit, by catering to fossil fuel interests, is ensuring a future with more erosion, floods, droughts, and storms. We call on them to prioritize people and the planet over profits,” Jamil said.

Over 4,000 delegates, including representatives from Japan’s Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI), Tokyo Gas, BP, and Exxon, are attending the summit hosted by leading power company JERA. 

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