Photo/IllutrationDefense Minister Taro Kono on Jan. 11 in Naha, Okinawa Prefecture (Jun Kaneko)

The Defense Ministry is harnessing the sun and wind to make Self-Defense Forces facilities across the country more environmentally friendly.

Defense Minister Taro Kono announced that he will review means of procuring electricity for the ministry and SDF facilities to increase the renewable energy use rate from the next fiscal year at a news conference following a Cabinet meeting on Dec. 23.

In a written statement released with his instructions earlier in the month, he said, “We're aiming for 100 percent (use of) renewable energy."

“The Self-Defense Forces will take action against climate change problems,” he added.

Kono came up with the idea and decided on the shift in energy resources after exchanges with Environment Minister Shinjiro Koizumi.

However, as the plan lacks specific targets beyond the aim for complete reliance on renewable resources, the feasibility is uncertain.

Kono laid out the vision on the assumption that the bidding process will be transparent and that procurement costs will not be pushed up. The renewable energy will be purchased on a preferential basis from local companies with regional development in mind.

Kono will ask for a mid-term report on the procurement situation by the end of May.

"For now, we will make an effort (to increase renewable energy use) at all our facilities," he said.