Japan launches energy conservation campaign

Tokyo, May 2 (IANS/EFE) Japan launched a campaign Wednesday to reduce energy consumption during the summer, but the government did not impose rationing for the first time since the accident at the Fukushima nuclear power plant two years ago.

The move comes as nearly all of Japan’s nuclear power plants remain offline.

The “Cool Biz” campaign will have officials and lawmakers working without their usual coats and ties in an effort to reduce use of air conditioning, officials said.

The voluntary campaign calls for offices across the country to keep thermostats set at higher temperatures and employees to wear cooler, more casual clothing.

“We want people to help out by keeping air conditioners at an appropriate temperature and to avoid heatstrokes by staying hydrated,” Environment Minister Nobuteru Ishihara told the Kyodo news agency.

An earthquake and tsunami in northeastern Japan March 11, 2011, killed 15,853 people, left 3,282 others missing and damaged the Fukushima nuclear power plant, causing the worst nuclear accident since Chernobyl.



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