エネルギー計画 「原発活用」は現実的な戦略だ

The Yomiuri Shimbun 7:28 pm, April 12, 2014
Government takes realistic stance on N-power in basic energy plan
エネルギー計画 「原発活用」は現実的な戦略だ

 ◆最適な電源構成の設定を急げ◆

The basic energy plan, which serves as a guideline for the government’s energy policy and was endorsed at a Cabinet meeting on Friday, represents a leap forward in efforts to normalize that policy, which has been marred by a series of turnabouts. The government now must reestablish a regime for a stable supply of energy.
 迷走した日本のエネルギー政策を、正常化する大きな一歩である。電力の安定供給体制の立て直しが求められよう。

The plan defined nuclear energy, the key focus in drafting the program, as “an important base load electricity source” that generates electricity day and night. It also clearly stated that nuclear power plants will resume operations after their safety is confirmed.
 政府がエネルギー政策の指針となるエネルギー基本計画を閣議決定した。
 最大の焦点だった原子力発電所については、昼夜を問わずに発電する「重要なベースロード電源」と位置付けた。
安全性を確認した原発の再稼働も明記した。

The plan is appropriate for officially ending the policy line of phasing out nuclear energy that was upheld by the administrations of the Democratic Party of Japan.
 民主党政権が掲げた「脱原発路線」に、正式に決別する妥当な内容と言える。

Komeito consent was key
 ◆公明党の同意がカギに◆

Following the outbreak of the crisis at Tokyo Electric Power Co.’s Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant, operations of all 48 of the nation’s nuclear reactors have been suspended—a situation that is simply abnormal.
 東京電力福島第一原発の事故を受け、全原発48基の停止という異常事態が続いている。

The government initially planned to have the basic energy plan endorsed at a Cabinet meeting early this year, but it had to wait until now because of prolonged efforts to reach a consensus between the Liberal Democratic Party and its junior coalition partner New Komeito.
 政府は当初、今年初めにもエネルギー基本計画を閣議決定する方向だったが、自民、公明両党との調整が長引いた。

Komeito, which had vowed to swiftly stop nuclear power generation during election campaigns, eventually agreed to the basic policy of utilizing nuclear power—a realistic judgment in light of the stringent power supply situation facing Japan.
 速やかな「原発ゼロ」を選挙公約に掲げた公明党も、最終的に、原発を活用する基本方針に同意した。厳しい電力事情を考えたうえでの現実的な判断だった。

Nuclear power accounted for 30 percent of the nation’s electricity generation before the nuclear crisis. Nearly 90 percent of the power once generated by nuclear plants is now being compensated for by thermal power.
 事故前に全発電量の3割だった原発を火力発電が代替し、比率は9割近くに達している。

Depending excessively on thermal power, for which fuel must be imported from abroad, is extremely risky from a security viewpoint.
 輸入燃料に頼る火力発電への過度な依存は、エネルギー安全保障の観点から極めて危うい。

The additional fuel costs incurred by the substitution of thermal power top ¥3.6 trillion a year, draining an enormous amount of national wealth from Japan into resource-rich countries.
 火力発電の追加燃料費は年3・6兆円に上り、資源国への巨額な国富流出が続く。

The electricity rates TEPCO charges households have risen by 40 percent from before the crisis, and the corresponding rates by Kansai Electricity Power Co. have increased by nearly 30 percent. As things stand now, additional rate hikes are inevitable.
家庭の電気料金は事故前より東電で4割、関西電力も3割近く上がり、このままでは追加値上げも不可避だろう。

It is worrying that there are no prospects yet of resuming the operations of nuclear power plants. The government should gear up efforts to restart nuclear power plants through such measures as persuading the local governments that host power plants to accept their resumption.
 問題は、いまだに原発再稼働への道筋が見えないことである。政府は立地自治体の説得を含め、再稼働の実現に向けた取り組みを加速させるべきだ。

Energy target doubtful
 ◆再生エネ2割は疑問◆

Another focal point of the basic plan was how to estimate the spread of solar power and other renewable energy. The government stated in the plan that it would aim to raise the percentage of renewable energy in the electricity supply to more than 20 percent by the end of fiscal 2030, from about 10 percent in fiscal 2012.
 基本計画のもう一つの焦点は、太陽光など再生可能エネルギーの普及をどう見込むかだった。政府は、2012年度に約1割だった再生エネの比率を、30年度に2割以上にすることを盛り込んだ。

The target was set in deference to Komeito and others, who place importance on renewable energy. Although it is necessary to expand the use of renewable energy, it is doubtful whether it was appropriate to set a numerical target only for renewable energy when the government has yet to compile an overall plan with appropriate percentage targets for all energy sources.
 再生エネを重視する公明党などの主張を受け入れたものだ。再生エネの拡充は必要だが、目指すべき最適な電源構成の全体像をまとめる前に、再生エネだけに数値目標を掲げたのは疑問である。

Raising the percentage of renewable energy to 20 percent means that renewable energy sources must be used to produce electricity equivalent to that generated by the full operation of 10 nuclear reactors, in addition to what is currently being generated by renewable energy sources.
 2割に引き上げるには、原発10基をフル稼働して作る電力を、再生エネで新たに確保する計算になる。

To produce that amount of electricity with solar power would require a tract of land 10 times the area inside the JR Yamanote Line, which loops around central Tokyo. In the case of wind power generation, it would require about 20,000 windmills. As things stand, these options have only a faint possibility of realization.
太陽光だけなら東京の山手線内の10倍の用地が、風力では約2万基の風車が要る。現時点では実現性に乏しい目標ではないか。

There are many hurdles to overcome, such as abrupt changes in power generation volume depending on sunshine and wind conditions. It will be impossible to find a way unless technology development is accelerated through the joint efforts of the private and public sectors.
 日照や風の状況による発電量の急変動など、克服すべき課題も多い。官民が連携して技術開発を加速しないと、活路は開けまい。

The crucial point is to promptly set a target figure for the composition of all power resources, including nuclear power generation, and present a road map for achievement of that goal.
 大切なのは、原発を含む電源構成の目標設定と、その達成への工程表を速やかに示すことだ。

If the direction of the nation’s energy policy remains uncertain, it will be difficult for companies to work out business strategies for the medium and long term. There are also fears it will hinder the Abe administration’s Abenomics economic policy.
 エネルギー政策の方向が不透明なままでは、企業が中長期の経営戦略を立てにくい。安倍政権の経済政策「アベノミクス」の足かせとなる恐れもある。

It is essential to diversify energy sources in a balanced manner among thermal generation, nuclear power and renewable energy, which all have merits and demerits in terms of economic efficiency, stability of supply and environmental impact. It is also necessary to take a multilateral approach, including the development and construction of thermal power plants with lower greenhouse gas emissions.
 経済性や供給安定性、環境負荷など、それぞれ長所と短所のある火力、原子力、再生エネにバランスよく分散させることが肝心だ。温室効果ガスの排出量を抑えた火力発電所の開発・新設など、多角的な対応も求められよう。

The basic energy plan states that dependence on nuclear power generation “will be reduced as much as possible.” But at the same time, it says “the nuclear power volume to be secured will be assessed.” This leaves room for the possibility of building a new nuclear power plant or reactor. But there is no denying that the plan stopped short of clarifying its stance.
 基本計画は原発依存度を「可能な限り低減させる」とする一方、「確保していく規模を見極める」としている。原発の新増設に含みを残しているが、踏み込み不足は否めない。

A policy to promote construction of new nuclear power plants or reactors should be clarified in the future for the purpose of maintaining nuclear technology and nurturing related human resources.
 原子力技術の維持と人材育成のためにも、原発を新増設する方針を明示すべきだろう。

The public has deep-seated concerns about the safety of nuclear power plants, partly due to the delay in ending the crisis at the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant. The government and TEPCO must work together closely to end the crisis as soon as possible.
 原発の安全性に対する国民の不安が根強いのは、福島第一原発の事故収束の遅れも一因だ。政府と東電が緊密に連携し、早急に収束を図ることが重要である。

Pave way for final disposal

To utilize nuclear power generation, it is essential to pave the way for resolving the issue of a final disposal site for radioactive waste. It was natural for the basic energy plan to say “the government will take the initiative in tackling the matter.” It is urgent to carry out concrete measures, such as selection of a final disposal site.
 原発を活用するうえで、放射性廃棄物の最終処分に道筋をつけることも欠かせない。「国が前面に立って取り組む」としたのは当然だ。処分地選定などで具体的な進展を図ることが急務となる。

 ◆最終処分に道筋つけよ◆

Regarding the nuclear fuel cycle, the plan retains an expression that the matter “will be dealt with flexibly.” However, concern remains.
 核燃料サイクルについて「対応の柔軟性を持たせる」との表現が維持されたのは、懸念が残る。

It is laudable, on the other hand, that the Monju fast-breeder reactor has been positioned anew as a focus of international research to reduce the amount and toxicity of nuclear waste. This must be used as a tailwind for the steady promotion of the nuclear fuel cycle.
 一方、高速増殖炉「もんじゅ」が新たに、核廃棄物の減量や有害度低減などの国際的な研究拠点と位置付けられたのは評価できる。核燃サイクルの着実な推進への追い風としたい。

China has 15 nuclear reactors and plans to construct an additional 55 units. If a serious nuclear accident occurs in China, radioactive substances will fall on Japan.
 中国には15基の原発があり、55基の建設が計画されている。重大な原発事故が起きれば、放射性物質は日本にも飛来する。

Exporting Japanese nuclear reactors with high safety performance to emerging countries will contribute to the international community and simultaneously lead to securing Japan’s own safety.
 安全性能の高い日本の原発を新興国などに輸出することは、国際貢献になると同時に、日本の安全確保にもつながる。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, April 12, 2014)
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by kiyoshimat | 2014-04-14 07:51 | 英字新聞

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