Should Japan Get Rid of Nuclear Power?
Nuclear power is the process of generating electricity through the use of nuclear reactors to release nuclear energy. Nuclear power includes nuclear decay, nuclear fusion and nuclear fission. Elements of the actinide series of the periodic table nuclear fission produced the highest level of nuclear energy that directly serves humankind, with nuclear decay processes, in the form of radioisotope thermoelectric generators and geothermal energy. Nuclear power is associated with both positive and negative effects on the environment.
Japan is currently faced with the energy crisis as it has to import 84 percent of its energy demands. In mid-1996, its first commercial nuclear power reactor began its operations, and since 1973, nuclear energy has been a national strategy priority. Following the 2011 Fukushima accident, nuclear policies in Japan were reviewed. The country’s nuclear reactors plants only provide for 30 percent of the country’s electricity requirement.
Overview of nuclear power in Japan
Japan engaged in the peaceful utilisation of nuclear technology to generate a considerable portion of its electricity despite being the only nation to have suffered the nuclear weapons’ devastating effects during the wartime killing one hundred thousand civilians. Following the tsunami that led to the perishing of 19,000 people and triggering of Fukushima nuclear accident (killed none), the public protested calling for nuclear power abandonment in the country. To create a balance between the public demands and continuation of reliable and efficient energy is being settled politically.
Japan shortage of energy and minerals was a significant influence on the country’s politics in the 20th century. The country depends on imports to meet over 90 percent of its energy requirements. During the period of recovery from the effects of World War II and industrial development, the country significantly depended on fossil energy imported from Middle East. The energy crisis became critical following the oil shock in 1973. At this time, Japan had an already flourishing nuclear energy industry with five operational nuclear reactors. The re-evaluation of domestic energy policy led to the diversification of nuclear program giving a high priority on reducing the country’s dependence on oil imports.
Japan should not get rid of Nuclear power
Although there are many adverse effects of nuclear power in Japan, the country continuous to heavily invest in nuclear energy due the following reasons; the country wishes to ensure energy security through the reduction in dependence on oil imports which are very expensive, nuclear energy helps in reducing global warming by controlling greenhouse emissions and nuclear power provides safe and reliable energy for boosting economic growth in the country.