- Associate Professor Hitoshi Yoshizaki
Introduction of the discussion
The report issued by the IPCC (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change) is a compilation of the latest research results and scientific knowledge on global warming collected from around the world. The report provides a scientific basis for international efforts.
Based on this report, we often hear the common phrase “follow Germany” regarding carbon-free energy measures, since Germany is said to be the pioneer of energy policy that places top priority on environmental conservation, such as the declaration of non-nuclear power plants.
Finding the problem
But is this common phrase supported by the facts?
Comparing and analyzing CO2 emissions between 1990 and 2014, it can be said that Germany has achieved economic growth for 24 years while boldly promoting the shift to low-carbon energy by national policy.
In Germany, 25.8% of the total amount of electricity was generated by renewable energy generation in 2014, but almost the same amount of electricity as that of the nuclear power plant that was shut down was compensated by resuming dormant thermal power generation. It should also be noted that 43.6% of the total amount of power is based on coal and lignite thermal power generation.
We can see Germany as a nation of experimenting in order to achieve the CO2 emission reduction target promised in the Paris Agreement while maintaining a stable power supply that is indispensable for economic growth.
It is hard to say that Germany is making a national effort to realize a decarbonized society, and there is a considerable gap in perception between the German government and industry.
This is because the purchase price of emission rights in the European Union Emissions Trading System (EU-ETS) is low and stable, the electric power market has been liberalized, and Germany has the world’s highest recoverable reserves of lignite. Therefore, it can be said that the common phrase of “follow Germany” is wrong.
Therefore, through the decarbonization energy policy proposal, I would like to study a mechanism to optimize the balance between the spread of decarbonization energy and the stabilization of power supply. This is because there is no country in the world that can serve as a great role model.
Examining the conclusion
By studying with Associate Professor Hitoshi Yoshizaki, who is a former bureaucrat from the Ministry of the Environment and an expert on environmental policy, I am sure that I could obtain various perspectives regarding my research and it would open up new horizons for me.
Therefore, I believe that Keio University’s Faculty of Environment and Information Studies is the most suitable place for pursuing my research and social contributions, and I am aspiring to enter your school and study in your laboratory.