With the G20 Summit held in Osaka on June 28-29, citizens’ groups and environmental NGOs gathered in Yokosuka, Kobe and Osaka on June 26th-28th to call on Japan, as G20 host, to declare a phase-out of coal-fired power.
 Activists in 5 Asian countries (Indonesia, Philippines [Video], Bangladesh, Pakistan, India), together with allies in Australia and the United States also took action to protest against Japan’s financing of coal-fired power plants. These actions below were conducted as part of the NO COAL JAPAN campaign, an international coalition of more than 50 NGOs, in Japan and abroad, including 350.org. 



On the 26th, activists held an action against TEPCO’s planned new coal-fired power plant in Yokosuka City in front of the project site. 

This action was led by a local citizens’ association leading a lawsuit against the construction of the facility. About 100 people gathered, including members of the “Tokyo Bay Association for Thinking about Coal-fired Power”(which has  successfully  canceled the plan  for coal-fired power  plants in Chiba Prefecture), as well as members of other NGOs who support 350.org and No Coal Japan. 


The association strongly opposed the construction of the new coal-fired power plant, calling for international decarbonization in line with the goals of the Paris Agreement.
 Furthermore, TEPCO former employees raised criticism not only about global warming issues but also about the past experiences of the disastrous diseases caused by coal dust. 

A student who participated in this action for the first time commented “When you look at it carefully, you can see that the coal-fired power plant is a serious problem for everyone. It convinced me to be more involved in future activities.” 
Regarding the upcoming trials, the leaders of local organizations have called for union and solidarity, since a greater number of plaintiffs will give more weight to their claims. 


Fridays for Future Tokyo member’s youth report




On June 27th, 350.org Japan and partner groups held an action in front of Kobe Steel’s planned new coal-fired power plant in Kobe City, targeting Japans’ prime minister Abe Shinzo as a former member of Kobe Steel, Ltd. 

Protesters called on Prime Minister Abe as G20 host to show ambition for climate action, demanding a halt to Japan’s support for new coal-fired power in Japan and abroad. A number of local residents who have filed a lawsuit against the construction plan of a new coal-fired power plant in Kobe also participated in the action, strongly expressing their wish for a zero emission society. 


Fridays for Future Tokyo member’s youth report



Coinciding with the start of the G20 Summit in Osaka on June 28th, Japanese NGOs conducted an action directed at Prime Minister Abe and other G20 leaders, calling for decisive measures to address the climate crisis and for Japan to stop funding coal, in front of Totenkaku in Osaka. 


The activists wore masks portraying the G20 Leaders, with President Trump and Prime Minister Abe offering buckets full of coal to other leaders but being flatly refused. The leaders of France, Germany, and Canada, who have made a decision to phase out coal, are asking for Shinzo Abe to do the same and declare a coal phase out. 



In addition, 350.org Japan, together with partners Sum of US and Oil Change International, issued an international petition calling on Japan’s government and financial institutions to stop supporting coal-fired power plants and lead a just transition to a renewable energy. More than 80,000 people signed the petition and it was submitted to the Prime Minister Office on 27th, just before the summit.


Another action was held to honor petition signatories with portraits of more than 200 participants holding a banner saying “Japan: Stop Funding Coal”, which was turned into a digital mosaic and spotlighted onto the base of Osaka Castle, a symbol of the G20 host city.   


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350.org Japan Team

*Big thanks for Saburia amd Maud from Climate Action Japan for assisting with the translation of this article!!!