“Solar Party” Founded in Japan

Shintaro Ishihara, the former Governor of Tokyo who resigned that post recently, has formed a new party called the “Solar Party” (太陽の党).

I have no right to vote in Japan, since I am a German citizen. But since I am a strong supporter of solar energy, I might consider voting for this new party if I could, or recommending doing so to others.

There is yet no word on what kind of energy policy the new party will support. But there are some programs in other areas.

For one, Ishihara wants Japan to double spending on defense. I would support that, on the condition that the additional spending goes into developing renewable energy. Have the soldiers do something against the greatest security threat humanity (and Japan) has faced in history. Have them install solar panels on every available spot, and offshore wind energy everywhere, even around the Senkaku islands (after agreeing on the conditions for that with China, that is).

The Solar Party also wants a large scale spending program to get the areas damaged by last year’s tsunami back on track. That also sounds great. Being the Solar Party, 70 percent of those funds should go into installing solar panels on areas not suited for farming for a couple of decades until the radiation values go down.

They also want to balance the budget by 2030. To do that, one key strategy would be to reduce the cost of importing fossil fuel, by getting a large share of Japan’s energy from renewable energy.

On the other hand, this “Solar Party” title may just be taken from the rather irrelevant fact that Ishihara’s debut novel was called “Season of the Sun”.

It might also allude to the fact that the Japanese flag has the sun as a central element and stand for  nationalist feelings.

Actually, these explanations are rather more likely to be true. But it is fun to speculate for a moment what a real “Solar Party” would do after winning some elections.

Published by kflenz

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

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