LowCarbonPower logo
Instagram Facebook X (Twitter)

Electricity in Japan in 2023

Global Ranking: #40
32.1% #104 Low-carbon electricity
895.06 watts #28 Generation / person
453.35 gCO2eq/kWh #115 Carbon Intensity

As of 2023, Japan's electricity consumption heavily relies on fossil fuels with them making up over two-thirds of the total electricity supply amounting to roughly 66%. The major contributors to this category include gas and coal which contribute nearly 32% and 29% respectively. The use of oil in electricity generation is relatively minor, at approximately 3%. Conversely, low-carbon energy sources constitute about a third of the entire electricity consumption, underlining Japan's efforts towards sustainable power generation. Leading low-carbon sources include solar power, which makes up slightly over 10%, and hydropower, contributing around 8% of total consumption. Nuclear energy maintains a relatively small presence, trailing hydropower slightly at approximately 8%. Biofuels and wind energy constitute less than 5% and 2% of Japan’s electricity mix respectively.


Japan could greatly enhance its low-carbon electricity generation by further developing its existing resources, particularly solar power, which currently meets a tenth of the nation's electricity demand. Modelling successful strategies implemented by other countries could provide a roadmap for Japan's green energy agenda. For instance, countries like France, Slovakia, and Switzerland have significantly reduced their reliance on fossil fuels by leveraging nuclear power to produce 66%, 61%, and 50% of their electricity respectively. The same strategy could be employed in Japan to increase the current 8% electricity supply from nuclear power. Additionally, countries like Ireland and Germany, where wind power generates 35% and 30% of the electricity respectively, may hold lessons on how Japan can boost its wind energy generation which currently stands barely above 1%.


Japan's low-carbon electricity journey, especially considering its nuclear energy history, has been through interesting peaks and valleys. The late 1970s and 1980s evidenced considerable growth with a notable 28TWh expansion in the nuclear power generation in 1978. This upward trend persisted in the 1990s, albeit tempered by a significant reduction in hydropower generation in 1994. The 2000s began with a concerning plummet in nuclear energy generation with reductions of about 25TWh and 55TWh in 2002 and 2003 respectively, but this was followed by a robust recovery over the next few years. A significant decline marked the early 2010s, with nuclear power generation reducing by an alarming estimated 187TWh in 2011 and about 86TWh the following year. Despite these setbacks, Japan's nuclear power generation exhibited signs of recovery in recent years, evidenced by an increase of about 32TWh in 2018 and an estimated rise of 26TWh in 2023. This points to Japan’s resilience and unswerving commitment to low-carbon electricity generation.

Electricity Imports and Exports

Balance of Trade

Data Sources

For the years 1973 to 1984 the data source is World Bank.
For the years 1985 to 1989 the data source is Energy Institute.
For the years 1990 to 2019 the data source is IEA.
For the years 2020 to 2022 the data source is Ember.
For the year 2023 the data source is IEA.
Instagram Facebook X (Twitter)