On The Horizon - Renewable Energy in Asia: Korea

1. What are the driving factors for increasing renewable energy production in Korea?

On 15 August 2008, President Lee Myung-Bak declared “Low-Carbon, Green Growth” as the new 60-year national vision for Korea, announcing that implementing green growth would be a top priority national policy. This vision aims to shift the current economic development paradigm toward quality oriented growth, with more emphasis on new and renewable energy (NRE) resources. Under the Five-Year Plan for Green Growth, the share of renewable energy in total energy supply is expected to be doubled by 2020, from 2.7 percent in 2009 to 3.78 percent in 2013, and 6.08 percent in 2020. The three main policy drivers for this innovative renewable energy policy are as follows:

Climate Change Concerns -

In the 15-year period from 1990 to 2005, Korea’s carbon emissions doubled, making it the country with the fastest-growing rate of greenhouse gas among the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) countries. Korea’s energy mix is largely dominated by fossil fuels, which account for over 80 percent of total primary energy supply. As a non-Annex I party to the Kyoto Protocol, Korea has no obligations to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. However, President Lee announced that Korea would voluntarily reduce its carbon emissions 30 percent by 2020, which is the highest voluntary reduction level that IPCC has recommended for developing nations.

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Topics:  Asia, Carbon Emissions, Greenhouse Gas Emissions, Kyoto Protocol, OECD, Renewable Energy

Published In: Energy & Utilities Updates, Environmental Updates, International Trade Updates

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