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Doorstep Interview with Minister Seko (excerpted version)

*Note: This is a provisional translation for reference purpose only.

18:55 - 19:05
Sunday, September 9, 2018
Front Entrance Hall, METI

Opening Remarks

Hokkaido Eastern Iburi Earthquake and Typhoon No. 21

As of 14:00 today, the number of blackouts in Hokkaido has decreased to 445 houses. Except for 405 in areas where access is difficult due to landslides, it is expected that blackouts will be resolved by the end of the day today.

As for the electricity supply and demand situation, there remains a gap of about 10 percent between forecasted peak demand of 3.83 million kilowatts and supply capacity of 3.64 million kilowatts. As the electricity demand is growing due to the restart of production and business activities on Monday, I strongly hope that we will be able to avoid a situation which requires us to put planned blackouts into action, through collective efforts to fulfill each responsibility of all the people and companies in Hokkaido, relevant organizations, electric power companies, and the government.

Based on the supply-demand balance, as of this moment, there are no plans to implement planned blackouts tomorrow, Monday the 10th, or the day after tomorrow, Tuesday the 11th. The time period from 8:30 to 20:30 on Monday, where activities at workplaces will restart, will be the most crucial period for electricity-saving efforts. We would like to continue with the goal of 20 percent electricity savings though collective efforts of all the people, companies, relevant organizations, power electric companies, and government.

Regarding electricity supply capacity, I have instructed Hokkaido Electric Power Co. to indicate within a day or two more specific restoration prospects of Tomato-atsuma Thermal Power Station’s Unit 1, 2 and 4 that have been damaged. With such prospects, I believe that we will be able to assess more concretely the period of electricity-saving efforts that everyone in the prefecture should be taking. Currently, the rough indication is “at least about one week”.

As for the power outage caused by Typhoon No. 21, the number of blackouts as of 15:00 today has decreased to about 30,000 houses within the jurisdiction of Kansai and Chubu Electric Power Co. I would like to work towards reducing it by half by the end of the day today. In addition to the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism, we would like to cooperate with the Self Defense Forces, on eliminating road obstacles in order to secure routes and accelerate restoration activities.

Last updated:2018-09-09