South Korea plans to introduce an emissions trading scheme from the beginning of 2015, according to Reuters. The country’s government had planned to bring the scheme into effect in 2013, but has revised its plans following strong opposition from industry groups. The groups argue the carbon trading scheme will put them at a competitive disadvantage to exporters in countries such as the US, Australia and Japan which, have scrapped or postponed cap-and-trade plans. The revised bill is yet to be approved by parliament, but will reportedly increase the percentage of free carbon allowances for companies from 90% to 95%.
South Korea is the world’s ninth-biggest emitter of carbon dioxide and is targeting a 30% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by 2020, relative to 2005 levels. In November, South Korea announced plans to spend KRW9.2 trillion (USD8.3bn) through to 2019 to boost its offshore wind power capacity by 2.5GW. Most of the capacity will be developed on the country’s south coast with 900MW expected to be added by 2016.
South Korea plans to spend KRW40 trillion (USD36bn) on renewable energy over the next five years. The government will contribute KRW7 trillion (USD6.3bn) to support the production and deployment of solar and wind energy technologies, with the private sector expected to provide the remaining sum.