Japan's government and ruling coalition are mulling plans to provide utilities with fresh subsidies for the construction of nuclear power plants as part of Japan's effort to reduce greenhouse gases.
Government officials and ruling coalition politicians involved in energy policy have launched an internal study on the subsidy scheme. The government already pays subsidies to local governments and enterprises that host nuclear power plants.
The Japanese government plans to build 10-13 nuclear power plants by 2010, to fulfil its Kyoto commitment, but has met with significant opposition from communities opposing nuclear facilities in their vicinity. The country currently has 52 reactors in operation.
The Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry hopes to start its subsidy programme as soon as April 2004.