Japan is preparing for a “war on climate pollution” and is considering all sorts of ways to curb it, according to the head of a government-appointed panel tasked with assessing the country’s actions.
In a letter to the government, Tatsuo Yamashita, a former head of the government’s environmental protection committee, warned of the dangers posed by global warming and warned that Tokyo’s plans for a nationwide campaign to combat climate change would be “unacceptable.”
Yamashita said Tokyo was working on a national plan to curb emissions of CO2 and other greenhouse gases.
“It’s not easy to curb CO2 but there are a variety of strategies to achieve the goal,” he wrote.
According to a government document, the Japanese government is seeking the support of the opposition Liberal Democratic Party, which is opposed to Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s decision to scrap plans for an all out campaign to tackle climate change.
The Liberal Democratic party is opposed on several grounds to the plan, including the risk of triggering a massive backlash and the possibility of a public backlash from voters in the capital.
At the same time, the plan appears to be drawing support from the Liberal Democratic minority in the Diet, which has the power to approve the plan.
Yamasaki, who is also an advisor to Abe, said the new government was aiming to bring down emissions to below 2,000 tonnes per year by 2030.
But the plan is expected to be subject to a parliamentary committee which would determine whether it is feasible to implement the plan and how it would be implemented.
Japan has already set emissions targets that are too low, with Yamashits plan set to require a total reduction of 2.7 million tonnes by 2030 and 2.5 million tonnes below current levels.
As a result, Yamashit said he believed the government would be unable to achieve its goals because the current measures had not been fully implemented.
“We are facing a crisis of the atmosphere and we need to address the climate crisis by tackling CO2 pollution and carbon emissions,” Yamashitera wrote.
The government’s plan would require the use of all kinds of technologies, including a nationwide carbon market, a nationwide cap-and-trade system and subsidies for electricity and gas.
Taken together, the two measures are expected to cost around 1 trillion yen ($100.5 billion) and require a massive increase in public expenditure.
To date, only around 10 percent of the money raised has been spent, according a government study published last month.
It was the first time that the government has put a plan on the table that included an emissions reduction target, but it did not come with an emissions cap or cap- and-trade scheme.
Critics of the plan have accused the government of making the targets too high and have questioned the government for failing to provide any details on how much money it would spend.