Japan submits updated emissions plan, leaving carbon target unchanged

FILE PHOTO: A school student holds a sign as she takes part in the global students strike for action on climate change in Tokyo, Japan, March 15, 2019. REUTERS/Kim Kyung-hoon/File Photo

TOKYO (Reuters) – Japan has maintained its carbon emissions reduction target in its updated emissions plan submitted to the United Nations as part of an international process to address climate change.

The government stuck to its 2030 target of cutting emissions by 26% from 2013 levels in submitting its Nationally Determined Contribution to the UN.

The country “will pursue further efforts both in the medium-term and long-term, to reduce … emissions beyond this level,” a statement from the government said on Monday.

While Britain and much of Europe aim to cut carbon emissions to net zero by 2050, Japan is the only G7 nation still building new coal-fired power plants, one of the main sources of climate-warming emissions.

Investors managing $37 trillion in assets earlier this year urged Japan to slash the country’s carbon emissions, saying that a strong signal from Tokyo could help kick off international climate action ahead of a U.N. summit in Glasgow in November.

With climate change increasingly topping lists of investor concerns, Bank of Japan Governor Haruhiko Kuroda told the World Economic Forum in Davos in January that Japan should do more to cut emissions and mitigate the risks climate change poses.

Reporting by Aaron Sheldrick, editing by Louise Heavens

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