Climate activists launch global action week targetting Japan & G7 leaders

Storm over Japan’s refusal to set deadline for phasing out fossil fuels


May 15, 2023

/ By / New Delhi

Climate activists launch global action week targetting Japan & G7 leaders

Protestors in Tokyo demand G7 to take actions for rapid fossil fuel phase out

As final preparations begin for the G7 Summit to be held in Hiroshima from May 19-21, climate activists have launched week-long protests in Japan and 17 other nations to highlight the lack of progress on fossil fuel phase-out.

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Global climate activist group and members of Fossil Free Japan coalition is leading a worldwide protest to demand that Japan and the rest of G7 leaders immediately stop supporting all fossil fuels.

According to a press statement, the protest in Japan has been joined in by dozens of NGOs and collectives worldwide from May 12-19 as activists across the globe take to the streets to call for greater climate ambition from the world’s seven biggest economies when they gather in Hiroshima for the G7 Summit on May 19.

The statement adds that over 30 actions have been planned in 18 countries including the United States, the Philippines, Bangladesh, India, Indonesia, Nepal, Pakistan, Australia, France, the UK, Ukraine, and Estonia.

The organisers say that in the host city of this year’s G7 Summit, Hiroshima, Japanese activists have organised creative visual actions to urge Japanese Prime Minister Kishida to stop intentionally and strategically undermining Asian and global decarbonisation, and end Japan’s support for fossil fuels.

The statement adds that Japan’s G7 presidency this year opens a unique opportunity for the activists to act and demand that the government stop supporting all fossil fuels immediately.

The climate activist organisations say that Japan does not want to give up fossil fuels before and beyond 2030 and that it opposes setting a clear timeline for coal phase-out domestically and advocates for gas investment, both domestically and abroad. Under the current policy, Japan is determined to export greenwashing fossil technologies, rebranding them, to those “less developed” Asian countries in the name of development and international cooperation.

The statement adds that the policy’s sole purpose is to save Japan’s dying fossil fuel industry, while countless people in Asia have already suffered from forced evictions, pollution, and climate disasters. The policy will only worsen the current climate and democracy crisis in Asia and the world.

‘‘Our demands are clear and simple. We want to breathe clean air, live without the fear of drowning from floods, and live without the fear of getting evicted from our homes,’’ says the statement.

The protestors say that while climate and energy ministers of Group of Seven (G7) pledged to try to accelerate the transition to cleaner renewable energy, but offered no schedule to completely phase out coal-fired power plants as they recently concluded two days of meetings in Sapporo in northern Japan.

They add that in a 36-page communiqué Sunday that outlines their pledges, the ministers stressed the importance of reducing carbon emissions swiftly and feasibly and achieving a “predominantly decarbonised power sector” by 2035. They also promised to accelerate the “phase-out of domestic unabated coal power” and emphasised the need to reduce global greenhouse gas emissions by around 43 pc by 2030 and 60 pc by 2035 in light of the most recent report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).

Despite their pledge, they didn’t agree to a proposal to fully phase out coal by 2035, say the protestors.



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