Selin ATAY-TDO-Shinjiro Koizumi, a rising star of Japanese politics and new Environment Minister, spoke on the eve of a United Nations climate summit in New York, and he pledged to mobilize young people to push his coal-dependent country toward a low-carbon future by making the fight against climate change “sexy” and “fun.”

“In politics there are so many issues, sometimes boring. On tackling such a big-scale issue like climate change, it’s got to be fun, it’s got to be cool. It’s got to be sexy too,” Koizumi told a news conference in New York.

“We are committed to realizing a decarbonized society, and we are ready to contribute as a more powerful country in the fight against climate change,” environment minister said.

Koizumi said he wanted Japan to do more on climate, invoking his country’s role in forging the Kyoto Protocol, a climate treaty agreed in the Japanese city of Kyoto in 1997.

Koizumi reiterated his opposition to nuclear power on Sunday. “I want to realize a society, a country, with no fear about the nuclear crisis,” he said. “But it isn’t easy, it’s a complicated issue. But I’ll try my best to reduce the nuclear power in the future.”

The son of charismatic former prime minister Junichiro Koizumi, he is regularly rated by voters as the lawmaker they would most like to see in the top job when Abe steps down.


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