Businesses and households will be asked to conserve energy “as much as possible” during the winter, announced Japan on Tuesday.
As per the Jiji Press, this will be applicable from December of this year to March of next year; however, no specific target has been set in numbers.
While the reserve rate, or the margin of supply capacity over demand, is anticipated to be over the minimum needed level of 3 per cent nationally, the government has recognised the need to be alert regarding power supply this winter.
The nation’s grid operator’s most recent prediction places the power reserve ratio, at 4.1 per cent in Tokyo and Tohoku areas for January.
At a press conference Yasutoshi Nishimura, the industry minister called for cooperation from businesses and households.
“We need to act to ensure that stable electricity supply is not disrupted,” he said.
Following a similar plea this summer, it is the Japanese government’s first statewide call for electricity conservation in the winter since 2015.
To stay warm while saving electricity, the government has advised citizens to turn off extra lights and put on more layers of clothing, even when they are inside.
The request comes as further pressure is expected on an already stretched grid and amid fears of a possible suspension of Russian liquefied natural gas flows.
According to Bloomberg, the resource-scarce country lacks the capacity to produce electricity, and the high cost of liquefied natural gas mixed with the depreciating yen has made fuel acquisition difficult.
Reportedly, the largest energy producer in the nation, Jera Co., will also restart several of its thermal plant units to assist in alleviating the anticipated shortage this winter.