Japan will suspend new government support for domestic companies' exports of even high-efficiency coal power plants without technology to further reduce or capture carbon dioxide emissions, the industry minister said Friday.
The government decided the previous day to end new financing for coal power projects overseas without emission reduction measures by the year-end in line with the Group of Seven leaders' recent agreement to end government support for "unabated" coal-fired plants.
"Whether to grant government support for export will be judged not from the viewpoint of whether they are highly efficient, but whether emission reduction measures are taken," Economy, Trade and Industry Minister Hiroshi Kajiyama told a regular press conference.
Increasing the efficiency of coal-fired power plants can reduce CO2 emissions and Japan has supported the export of such plants. However, Kajiyama's remarks indicate that Tokyo will no longer endorse them unless steps are taken to cut emissions.
Mixing coal with ammonia, which does not emit CO2 when burnt, and storing discharged CO2 under the ground would be among the prospective technologies for allowing coal plant exports, though they are still at the experimental stage.
The government has yet to decide which methods can meet requirements for its export support.