社説:再生可能エネルギー 原発代替は十分可能だ

(Mainichi Japan) August 3, 2011
Nuclear energy can be replaced with renewable energy
社説:再生可能エネルギー 原発代替は十分可能だ

The elimination of nuclear power plants cannot be achieved over a short period of time.
 原発依存からの脱却は短時日ではできない。

Therefore, we basically support the government's intention to consider the matter from short-, medium- and long-term perspectives.
政府は「短期」「中期」「長期」に分けて考えるという。基本的に賛成だ。

It is necessary to set a clear timeline if the government is to draw a realistic roadmap toward the goal.
現実的なロードマップを描くには時間軸の設定が不可欠である。

In the short run, there is no choice but to switch to thermal power generation using natural gas.
 短期的には天然ガスによるガス火力発電にシフトするほかない。

The government should promptly initiate its work to do so because it normally takes about a decade to complete a thermal power station, considering the time required to select and procure a site for the facility.
火力発電所の建設には用地選定まで含めれば通常10年ぐらいかかる。直ちに着手すべきだ。

Circumstances surrounding natural gas have drastically changed.
 天然ガスをめぐる状況は一変している。

The amount of natural gas produced has sharply increased since the technology of extracting gas from shale was established in the United States.
米国で頁岩(けつがん)中のシェールガスを採取する方法が確立し生産量が急拡大した。

Shale gas fields are being developed in China and many other countries in the world.
中国を含め世界中で開発が進んでおり、

The International Energy Agency estimates that the amount of gas consumed on a global scale will increase by 50 percent by 2030.
国際エネルギー機関(IEA)は2030年までに、世界のガス消費量は50%増加するという。

The natural gas age has arrived.
「天然ガスの時代」だ。

 ◇当面はガス火力で

Germany, which has decided to pursue a society without nuclear power, intends to make up for a shortage of electric power with that generated by thermal power stations.
 脱原発に踏み切ったドイツもガス火力で穴埋めする。

However, the price of natural gas will certainly rise because its demand is expected to sharply expand.
しかし、需要の拡大で価格の上昇は必至だ。

Measures should be taken on a global scale to not only guarantee contracts to purchase gas but also to expand interest in gas field exploitation.
ガスの購入契約の保全だけでなく、ガス田採掘の権益拡大に努めるべきだ。国家的支援を強化する必要がある。

Of thermal power plants using fossil fuels, those powered by coal emit the largest amount of carbon dioxide, a type of greenhouse gas.
 石炭火力発電は化石燃料の中で二酸化炭素の排出量が最も多いが、

However, coal can be stably procured from all over the world, and its price is relatively low.
コストが安く世界各地から安定的に調達できる。

Electric power generated by such plants accounts for approximately 25 percent of electricity consumed in Japan.
我が国の電力の約25%を占める。

To ensure a stable supply of electricity, Japan will need to maintain its coal-powered thermal electric power plants.
電力の安定供給のため、石炭火力も維持していく必要があるだろう。

Germany relies on coal-powered electric power plants for 41 percent of electricity consumed domestically, far above the ratio in Japan.
ドイツは41%が石炭火力。日本よりずっとその比率が高い。

In short, there is no choice but to make up for a shortage of electric power as a result of decreasing nuclear power plants with power generated by thermal power stations until the ratio of power generated by renewable energy sources rises significantly.
 再生可能エネルギーによる発電量が増加するまで、火力発電で原発の穴を埋めていくほかないということである。

However, there are problems involving such efforts including a rise in the costs of generating electric power and an increase in greenhouse gas emissions.
ただ、これにはふたつ問題がある。コスト上昇と温室効果ガスの排出量の増加だ。

According to an estimate made by the Institute of Energy Economics, Japan, if all domestic nuclear power plants are shut down, the cost of Japan's imports of fuel will increase by 3.473 trillion yen next fiscal year, increasing the monthly average electricity charge by 1,049 yen per household and by 36 percent for businesses.
 日本エネルギー経済研究所の試算では来年度、全原発が停止すると、燃料輸入費は年間3兆4730億円増加し1世帯当たりの月額電気使用料は1049円、産業用電気料金は36%上昇する、という。

Business leaders have expressed grave concern that if a shortage of electric power becomes chronic and electric power rate rises as a result, it will force businesses to shift their factories abroad, speeding up the hollowing out of Japan's industry.
 産業界は電力不足が恒常化し電気料金が上昇すれば、海外への生産拠点の移転が増え産業の空洞化が進むという。

Some view the shortage of electric power as a unique opportunity to transform Japan's economy, which consumes a massive amount of electric power, into one that relies less on energy.
電力多消費型経済から21世紀型省エネ経済に転換する好機という見方も可能だが、

However, adverse changes in the economy, such as a sharp rise in the unemployment rate, must be avoided by all means.
失業の急増など経済の激変は避けたい。

The hollowing out of domestic industry is very complex and it cannot be attributed solely to a rise in energy expenses.
 そもそも、空洞化問題はエネルギーコストだけでなく

Behind the problem are also various factors such as the sharp appreciation of the yen, inadequate infrastructure for manufacturing, a shortage of human resources that have received advanced education, high corporate tax rates and a lack of leadership ability on the part of the government, which cannot decide whether Japan should participate in the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement.
円高の進行や生産インフラの不備、高度教育を受けた人材の不足、さらに高い法人税、環太平洋パートナーシップ協定(TPP)への参加を決められない政府の指導力不足など、複雑な要因がからんでいる。

The government needs to clarify its stance toward supporting businesses and implement specific measures to that end.
政府はビジネス支援の旗幟(きし)を鮮明にし、きめ細かく手を尽くさなければならない。

If Japan's reliance on nuclear power plants declines, it will be difficult for the government to achieve its goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 25 percent from 1990s levels.
 原発依存度が低下すれば、温室効果ガスを90年比25%削減するという政府目標の達成は難しい。

Therefore, it should review its goal.
目標を見直すべきだ。

After the Kyoto Protocol on greenhouse gas emission expires, a new system should be created under which Japan's exports of devices that help reduce greenhouse emissions to developing countries can be recognized as reductions in Japan's greenhouse gas emissions.
「ポスト京都」では途上国に温室効果ガスを低減する機器を輸出すれば、それが日本の温室効果ガス削減にカウントされるような新たなメカニズムが必要不可欠だ。

It should not use taxpayers' money to buy surplus emission credits from other countries in a desperate bid to achieve its numerical target.
外国から税金で余剰排出枠を買い、つじつま合わせする京都方式の単純延長だけは避けなければならない。

In the medium- and long term, Japan should develop and use more renewable energy.
 「中・長期」では再生可能エネルギーの開発・普及である。

Germany's policy of seeking to eliminate nuclear power stations is coupled with its strategy of seeking to be a leader in the field of renewable energy.
ドイツの脱原発政策は再生可能エネルギー分野の覇者を目指す戦略とセットだ。

The level of Japan's environmental protection technology is equal to that of Germany's.
日本の環境技術はドイツにひけをとらない。

Japan has the potential to become a leader in an environment-friendly energy revolution.
日本こそ「環境エネルギー革命」の勝者になる潜在力がある。

The Environment Ministry estimates by 2030, approximately 330 billion kilowatts per hour can be generated in Japan solely with renewable energy if its land is fully utilized.
 環境省の試算では、国土をめいっぱい利用すれば2030年、再生可能エネルギーによる発電が年間約3300億キロワット時も可能だという。

The figure is about 30 percent of electric power currently generated throughout Japan and equal to the amount of power currently generated by all nuclear power plants across the country.
現在の全発電量の約3割、原発の従来の発電シェアに相当する。

Theoretically, all atomic energy used for power generation in Japan can be changed to renewable energy.
理論的には再生可能エネルギーで原発の代替が十分可能なわけだ。

It is not easy to achieve this but the government should try by setting this as a target.
達成は容易でないが努力目標にしたい。

Among various electric power generation methods using renewable energy sources, Japan has placed priority on solar power generation.
 その中で日本では太陽光発電が先行してきた。

At one point, Japan was the No. 1 country in the world in terms of the amount of power generated by solar panels.
かつては世界一の発電量だったこともある。

Various experiments are being conducted, such as storing electric power generated by solar panels in batteries for electric vehicles.
太陽光パネルで発電し電気自動車の蓄電池に蓄えるなど、さまざまな試みがなされている。

The problem involving solar power generation is its high costs.
発電コストの高さが難点だが

However, as the method becomes widespread, the costs will certainly decrease.
普及とともに低下するだろう。

 ◇何よりも省エネを

Wind power generation is the most widespread in the world because its costs are relatively low.
 風力発電はコストが安く世界的には自然エネルギーの主力だが、

Japan is ranked only 12th in the world in the volume of power generated by wind power generators.
日本は世界12位。

There are various challenges that must be overcome, such as their noise.
騒音など課題も多いが

However, there are many such generators in the Tohoku and other regions, and their potential is particularly high.
東北地方を筆頭に潜在力は最大だ。

Floating wind power generators are fitted for Japan, which is surrounded by little sea with shoals.
遠浅の海の少ない日本の場合、浮体式の洋上発電が有望だ。

Moreover, the government should promote the introduction of geothermal power generation, which could be stable sources of electric power, and small- and medium-scale hydraulic power generation for local consumption.
また、安定電源になりうる地熱発電、小河川の中小水力発電も地産地消型の電源として推進すべきだ。

One of the disadvantages of natural energy sources is that their ability to generate electric power depends on the amount of sunshine and wind and is therefore unstable.
 自然エネルギーは日照次第、風次第で不安定という欠点がある。

This is the main reason why electric power companies have been reluctant to connect such power generators to their power grids.
電力会社が電力網への受け入れを渋ってきた理由だ。

To overcome this problem, power suppliers should expand their power interchange capacity between themselves and install special batteries to stabilize electric power in their respective grids.
その対策として、各電力会社間の電力融通の容量を拡大するとともに、電力が不安定になるのを防ぐ電池の設置を急ぐべきだ。

In the long run, power suppliers' regional monopoly needs to be reviewed.
長期的には電力の地域独占の見直しなども検討する必要がある。

Above all, reductions in energy consumption are most important.
 そして、何より省エネが重要だ。

The Institute of Energy Economics, Japan estimates that by replacing all incandescent bulbs in Japan with light-emitting diode (LED) bulbs, electric power equal to that generated by four nuclear reactors can be saved.
日本エネルギー経済研究所の試算では、白熱灯をすべて発光ダイオード(LED)照明に交換するだけで原発4基分の節約になる。

This is why it is said that "saving energy is creating energy."
「省エネは創エネ」と言われるゆえんだ。

Future generations will feel the limited nature of energy more than us.
 われわれの次の世代は今以上に資源の有限性に突き当たる。

Japan must reform itself into a country that can efficiently function with smaller amounts of energy.
少ないエネルギーで効率的に動く日本にしなければならない。

The system to supply energy needs to be restructured into one based on local production for local consumption.
「分散型」「地産地消型」のエネルギー構造に組み替えるほかない。

Renewable energy is most suitable for such an energy-supply system.
それには再生可能エネルギーが最も適している。

Prompt action is called for to ensure energy safety and security for future generations.
次世代の安全・安心のため行動を急ごう。

毎日新聞 2011年8月3日 2時30分(最終更新 8月3日 9時27分)
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by kiyoshimat | 2011-08-05 03:03 | 英字新聞

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