June 29, 2022

South Korean President Moon Jae-in at the United Nations climate summit in Glasgow has upgraded the country’s nationally determined contributions (NDC) targets, committing to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by at least 40 percent by 2030.

The country in September laid its 2050 net-zero commitment into a law and further announced a detailed carbon neutrality roadmap ahead of COP26. The new NDC target has been raised from 26.3 percent earlier.

In order to meet the same goals, the country has planned to invest 1.4 trillion won (US$1.18 billion) by 2030 to develop technologies to capture and store carbon dioxide in a move to achieve its carbon neutrality goal.

According to the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy, for the greenhouse emission drive, the government will invest around 1 trillion won in developing carbon storage technologies. It would use about 400 billion won in exploring and securing storage sites. And lastly, around 120 billion won in taking part in related international projects.

The Carbon Capture Storage (CCS) refers to a method of capturing carbon dioxide emissions from industrial facilities and storing them permanently underground. It is a key technology to achieve the carbon neutrality goal.

According to reports, the has been working to secure storage sites, and after six months of thorough research, areas near the western city of Gunsan and the eastern island of Ulleung are deemed promising to build the plant and they will be able to store around 730 tons of carbon combined.

The ministry added that up to 1.16 billion tons of carbon can be sequestrated in the case the country advances related technologies.

Ministry official Kang Gyeong-seong commented that the government continues to strive for securing CCS technologies at an early date to achieve the country’s greenhouse gas emissions goal and to boost green growth.

President Moon at the first day of the COP26 World Leaders Summit also formally announced the country’s decision to join the Global Methane Pledge. Under this pledge, it commits itself to reduce methane emissions by 30 percent by 2030.

According to the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change Methane, a greenhouse gas is more potent than carbon dioxide, and is responsible for about 30 percent of current global warming.