Barry Brook Likes Nuclear Energy

That’s not much of a headline there. But he just published an article on the recent Japanese Cabinet approved “Revolutionary Energy Strategy”, disapproving of the nuclear phase-out it has decided.

I am not sure if anyone in a position to actually influence Japanese energy policy cares what Barry Brook thinks.

And I am not sure if I care about the various errors in his article. It’s all so predictable. Renewable will never work, so Japan needs to reverse course and build many new nuclear reactors.

That won’t happen. If your strategy of doing something about climate change involves relying on nuclear power, you might as well give up completely.

As I expected, Brook of course recycles the claim I have thoroughly debunked that “the zero-nuclear policy may be shelved”. I predicted that in this post titled “Matthew Hulbert Wrong: Nuclear Dead in Japan”, where I stated:

I expect that this myth will be repeated in the pro-nuclear community at least as obstinately as the German coal myth.

Fact is, however:

The Japanese Cabinet last week approved the new “Revolutionary Energy Strategy”, which phases out nuclear.

That’s it. Bonus error exposures: The government (Cabinet) approved the energy policy on September 19 (link to original source in Japanese), not September 14 as Brook asserts in his first sentence. And the strategy document of September 14 decides not on phasing out nuclear until 2040, but wants to achieve a society not dependent on nuclear as soon as possible, and by the latest until 2040. That fine point has been lost on many (including Brook). You could have 48 nuclear plants on standby (as now) and still be “not dependent on nuclear” and therefore decide to not operate them.

Published by kflenz

Professor at Aoyama Gakuin University, Tokyo. Author of Lenz Blog (since 2003,

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