Energy and Climate Policy Institute

작성일 : 11-06-24 15:55
Enerzine No.11 COP18 Host Qualifications / Domino Effect on a Global Breakaway from Nuclear Power
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   Enerzine No. 11.pdf (131.9K) [10] DATE : 2011-06-24 15:55:27
1. Issues

COP18 Host Qualifications

The selection of the host country for COP18—the 18th Conference of the Parties—has been delayed. According to the hosting order, COP18 should be held in an Asian country in 2012, and South Korea and Qatar have applied to become the host country. The actual decision was supposed to be made in the Bonn meeting, but the Asian group, which is to decide on who will be the host country, had different opinions on the matter and could not arrive at a final decision.

Since the South Korean government applied to become a host country, Solidarity for Climate Justice or SCJ, a trade union, ENGOs, a farmers’ organization, and several progressive parties have strongly expressed their opposition to it. The South Korean government asserted that it is proper for South Korea to serve as an arbitrator in the process of coming up with an agreement between developed and developing countries as regards how to deal with climate change because it has played a leading role in the global efforts in such regard. The South Korean government’s main policy for dealing with climate change, however, is expansion of the resources-integrated construction industry, such as extension of nuclear power plants and thoughtless riverside development. Basically, the South Korean government believes that South Korea has the right to emit greenhouse gas until 2030 because South Korea is a developing country, even though it is the ninth highest greenhouse-gas-emitting county in the world and its greenhouse gas emission per capita is much higher than those of developed countries like Germany, the U.K., and Japan. With its lackadaisical efforts to address the problem of climate change, it is impossible for the South Korean government to effectively carry out the role of a global arbitrator on such matter.

Moreover, as reflected in the document published by the COP18 Bidding Committee, the representative of the South Korean government said, “As a chairman country, we can turn the negotiation to our advantage, If South Korea will be the COP18 host country.” This means that the South Korean government has the intent of hosting COP18 to only further its national interest and not on account of its fundamental concurrence with the need to stop climate change.

Currently, South Korea has abused very powerful police power. It indiscriminately represses protests and deported and prohibited entry to many foreign NGO members in 2010, during the G20 summit. If COP18 will be held in South Korea, it is certain that many NGO activities for the promotion of climate justice will be restricted. If all the other applicant countries are not qualified to serve as the COP18 host country, it should be considered that COP18 be held in Bonn again, which is where the UNFCCC headquarters is located.

Written by Jin-woo, Lee (Researcher:

2. Opinions

Domino Effect on a Global Breakaway from Nuclear Power

After the Fukushima accident, a domino effect on worldwide anti-nuclear movements started. Most recently, the Prime Minister of Italy, Silvio Berlusconi, who is one of the notoriously corrupt politicians, tried to construct a nuclear power plant but failed politically, because 90% of the Italian people voted against the construction of a nuclear power plant.

In Germany, the case is even more dramatic. Before the Fukushima accident, there were voices of opposition on the life extension of nuclear power plants that had been planned by Prime Minister Merkel and her conservative alliance. After the Fukushima accident, the German people showed their opinion that they should not put back the nuclear power plant disuse policy. This became very clear both in voting and on the streets. Prime Minister Merkel was surprised by this situation and promised to close all the nuclear power plants in Germany by 2022.
 Switzerland also formulated a nuclear power plant shutdown policy followed by Germany. The Switzerland Federal Council (cabinet council) had a meeting on 25th of last month and provisionally agreed to shutdown all nuclear power plants by 2034.  Among the five nuclear power plants, the first one will stop operations in 2019 and the last one will stop the work in 2034,

 These movements are not only happening in Europe but also in Asia. Many Asian countries are breaking away from nuclear power and this is receiving much attention. Actions break away from nuclear power stood out in Japan after the Fukushima accident. Last Saturday, June  11, Japanese Prime Minister Naoto Kan gave up new nuclear power plant construction plans and nuclear fuel reprocessing plant operation plans amid huge anti-nuclear protests, which were unprecedented in Japan.

In addition, the Chinese government is holding off all its new nuclear plant approvals and the attempt to construct an enormous nuclear power plant block project headed by the central government and local government. These plans collide with the local people’s strong resistance in India.
In spite of this domino effect against nuclear power, France, the United Kingdom, and South Korea are still holding on to their new nuclear power plant construction plans. We should extend this global domino effect of breaking away from nuclear power through networks and alliances between anti-nuclear movements around the world.

Written by Jae-kak, Han (Deputy Director: )

3. New Report

Phase out nuclear power: Post-Fukushima and the logic of energy transition

A new book managed by ECPI that suggests a scenario of a breakaway from nuclear power in Korea has been published. In this book, six ECPI researchers who authored the book criticized the general problem on nuclear power development and the mistakes resulting from the Korean government’s nuclear power development policy.
 The authors argue about the fictiveness of nuclear power development particularly the claims that it is a clean, safe and economical source of energy. They further claim that choosing nuclear power as an alternative for dealing with climate change is impossible. Especially, in Chapter 5 they said that adopting a policy of a breakaway from nuclear power like what Germany did is very realistic given the Korean conditions. They also suggested an energy scenario in which all nuclear power plants in Korea would be shut down and instead use of renewable energy is expanded by 2030.
 Currently, 21 units of nuclear reactors are operating in four nuclear power plants in Korea and the rate of concentrates of these nuclear power plants is one of the highest in the world. Despite the Fukushima nuclear power plant accident, Korean president Lee is still pushing for the nuclear power extension policy, which increases nuclear power production rates from 30% to 60% by 2050 by constructing 12 more nuclear units. For this reason, environmental NGOs and progressive institutes in Korea criticize imaginary Barmecidal ‘Green Growth’ and demand the stopping of the extension of nuclear power plants and the shutdown of the life-threatening nuclear power units.

Written by Hyun-woo Kim (Researcher:

4. Act now 
 1. Case study; Energy and climate injustice in Asia
    This case study will include case of Thailand, Laos, Cambodia, and Japan.

 2. Working on new alternative system instead of ‘Cap and Trade’ so called ‘Cap and Tax’


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