Phillip Riley Research Series: South Korea

Located in East Asia, South Korea has had difficulties increasing their renewable energy production and generation. Stemming from a lack of resources, South Korea is a major importer of natural gas, oil and coal. Of the energy that is produced domestically, nuclear power plays a key role, with future plans to expand in this area. Despite a history of implementing reduction measures, greenhouse gas emissions in South Korea have been steadily rising. This rise in emissions has been complemented by a delay in the installation of renewable energy technologies, which currently only account for 2% of energy generation.

Nuclear power also plays a significant role (30%) in South Korea’s domestic energy generation. Concerns following the Japanese Fukushima disaster resulted in the use of nuclear power being scaled back. This was further supported following problems in South Korea surrounding false safety certifications of nuclear parts in 2012. Despite these concerns surrounding nuclear power, the Korean Government has unveiled plans to expand on this fuel type. South Korea hopes to continue to build a strong nuclear industry with high levels of availability and reliability. Currently, under the Second National Energy Master Plan, South Korea aims to become a nuclear power plant export powerhouse by 2020.

To continue to read the full South Korea report as part of our Research Series “The Future is Renewable: Targets and Policies by Country”, please click “Read More”.

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