TOKYO (Reuters) - Popular Tokyo Governor Yuriko Koike, whose fledgling party is gaining momentum ahead of an Oct. 22 general election, said on Thursday at a news conference that she would look into what steps are needed to reduce Japan's dependence on nuclear energy to zero by 2030.
Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is calling the snap poll in the hope his Liberal Democratic Party-led coalition can keep its majority in the parliament's lower house, where it now holds two-thirds of the seats.
Koike has said she wants Japan to abandon nuclear power - a stance likely to resonate with many voters - but had not previously mentioned a target date. Abe's government plans to retain atomic power as part of the energy mix, despite safety worries after the 2011 Fukushima crisis.
(Reporting by Kiyoshi Takenaka, Writing by Linda Sieg; Editing by Christian Schmollinger)