Japan drafts bill for 25% emissions cut by 2020

14:11, March 12, 2010      

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The government led by the Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ) on Friday passed a bill in parliament that aims to see the nation cut its emissions of harmful gases to the environment by 25 percent, on the condition that other major emitters pass a similar target.

The bill also aims to see the nation cut emissions by 50 percent through measures such as the use of nuclear power and carbon taxes by 2050.

Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama announced at an international meeting in New York in September last year, and urged other nations to set similar goals.

''The greatest thing about the bill is that it stipulates a 25 percent cut,'' Hatoyama said. ''I hope that the public will aim for the same target.''

The bill stipulates that all renewable energy must be purchased by power utilities and looks to implement a carbon tax by 2011.

The bill has been criticized by environmental group because of a stipulation that will allow companies to cut emissions per unit produced, which could lead to overall emissions rising.

"We wanted climate policy to be compatible with growth, to take out factors that may slow growth, while at the same time control overall carbon dioxide emissions," said DPJ Secretary-General Ichiro Ozawa.

The bill is set to be enacted by parliament by the middle of June, and over the next year the DPJ will draft separate pieces of legislation in order to implement the plan.

Source: Xinhua
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