Oil Change International,

Expert Quotes on Japan’s Global Derailing of the Clean Energy Transition on Day of Japanese Prime Minister Kishida’s State Visit with U.S. President Biden


One of the key goals for Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida’s visit with U.S. President Biden is to build pressure to lift the U.S. LNG export approvals pause and to support Japan’s efforts to expand fossil fuel-based technologies across Asia. Below are resources and quotes from international experts.

  • Photos: Pikachu Rally in DC – April 10, 2024 (Photo Credits: Charles Belt for Oil Change International)
  • Read Newsweek Op-Ed: Japanese PM Kishida Must Stop Derailing the Global Energy Transition
  • Climate Home News Op-Ed: Louisiana communities are suffering from Japan-funded LNG exports
  • A new report issued yesterday by Oil Change International and Friends of the Earth United States reveals that Japan is the largest financier of upstream fossil fuels, providing almost half of the G20’s finance for upstream fossils between 2020 and 2022. Japan is also the 3rd largest international fossil fuel financier among G20.
  • Listen to April 4 NRDC press conference with experts on this topic here – passcode: *Se3jj

Japanese financing of LNG projects has a legacy of environmental and human harm, especially along the US Gulf Coast. Japanese private banks (MUFG, Mizuho, SMBC) are the top three financiers for LNG export terminals in the U.S., and the U.S. is the largest exporter of LNG in the world. Though Biden’s LNG pause was a positive step, the continued exploitation of vulnerable communities for LNG projects is alarming. Japan is also one of the largest public financiers of gas projects in the Gulf and throughout the world, most recently approving billions in public finance for gas projects in Australia, Vietnam and Mexico. Protesters will call attention to Japan’s role in promoting dirty energy in the US and abroad, and urge Kishida and Biden to say #SayonaraFossilFuels.

Susanne Wong | Asia Program Manager, Oil Change International

“Prime Minister Kishida is driving the expansion of gas and LNG, which is harming communities and ecosystems, undermining energy security and worsening the climate crisis. Despite their rhetoric, the US continues to fuel the climate crisis as the world’s top producer of oil and gas. We urge Kishida and Biden to stop derailing the global energy transition and sacrificing our communities and planet for corporate profit.”

Allie Rosenbluth | US Program Co-Manager, Oil Change International

“Pushed by opposition from frontline communities and climate activists, Biden’s move to pause authorizations for new LNG exports is an important first step. But he has to do more. He must use his executive authority to stop all approvals for new fossil fuel projects while ensuring a just transition for workers and impacted communities. In the meantime, Japan is driving the expansion of fossil fuels across Asia and globally and is derailing the transition to renewable energy. Japanese financed LNG projects have left a legacy of harm, particularly along the US Gulf Coast.”

Travis Dardar | Louisiana Shrimper and Founder, Fishermen Interested in Saving Our Heritage (FISH), United States

“My wife had a heart attack, and my little boy was on depression medicine. They made life a living hell for us. There are more families waking up next to this thing gasping for air. I don’t know what the cleanest solution is but I know that this isn’t it. To continue down this path is very destructive, but they’re willing to sacrifice what makes Louisiana Louisiana for profit.” 

“When people think of south Louisiana they think of shrimp and seafood, not what you see now, which is industrial waste land. This benefits no one but the corporations who own it.”

Gerry Arances | Executive Director, Center for Energy, Ecology and Development, Philippines

“It’s astonishing that countries that have been historically responsible for the climate crisis we now suffer from are still digging up more fossil fuels, burning more, and financing massive expansion in the US, Southeast Asia, and the rest of the world. Japanese banks, including government owned JBIC, are at the forefront of this – to the detriment of people, biodiversity, and the energy transition of our countries.

In the Philippines, we’re on the cusp of an enormous energy transition, and the potential for 100% renewable energy is massive and fully capable of aligning to the 1.5°C goal. Japan is not only harming communities but also undermining already available solutions. Investing in gas and other false fossil solutions will only serve corporations, not the people of Southeast Asia and the Philippines.”

Brendan Guy  | Natural Resources Defense Council Director, International Climate

“Global fossil fuel use must decline at least 40% this decade to achieve the goal of the Paris Agreement. Yet Japan and Prime Minister Kishida are doubling down on their fossil fuel reliance, and derailing the wider regional and global transition to clean energy in pursuit of their narrow commercial interests. Given the clear climate science and the need to follow-through on the global agreement to accelerate away from fossil fuels, it’s high time for Japan to change course.”

Ayumi Fukakusa | Deputy Executive Director, Friends of the Earth Japan, Japan

“If Prime Minister Kishida truly wants to promote energy security, peace and prosperity as he claims, he would use the trilateral meeting to help Asia and the US transition to renewables, not double down on dirty fossil fuels like gas.

Kishida’s actions speak far louder than his rhetoric. By continuing to support climate-wrecking projects like Freeport and Cameron LNG, Kishida is jeopardizing a liveable future and putting the world on track to a catastrophic 5-6C of warming.”

Lidy Nacpil | Coordinator, Asian Peoples’ Movement On Debt And Development, Philippines

“Japan’s energy strategy is leaving a worldwide trail of destruction. From LNG buildout in the US Gulf coast to the LNG expansion in the Philippines, Japan is plundering communities and ecosystems in the name of profit. 

All over the world, communities are fighting back and demanding a just transition. Prime Minister Kishida has the opportunity to make that happen.

The choice for Kishida is simple — listen to the people and stop pursuing LNG, or face resistance.”

Jeffrey Jacoby | Deputy Director, Texas Campaign for Environment, United States

“Local communities, particularly along the US Gulf Coast, are already losing their livelihoods, their homes, and the lives of loved ones to the toxic impacts of Japan-backed gas projects. To date, the Japanese government and private banks have pumped over $52 billion into US LNG projects, including Cameron LNG which is devastating local fisheries, and Freeport LNG which literally exploded less than two years ago.

By backing these projects while touting ‘energy security’, Prime Minister Kishida is turning a blind eye to the communities all over Texas, Louisiana, and around the world who are undoubtedly less secure due to LNG.”