Korea’s Green Party has condemned a joint summit in Budapest between South Korea and Hungary on November 3rd.

The Green Party of Korea is angry over a decision made during the summit in which the two countries expressed a commitment to achieving carbon neutrality by 2050, BUT with the help of nuclear power.

Hungary’s President, Janos Ader said: “The common intention of both countries is that carbon neutrality is impossible without the use of nuclear energy.

Korea’s Greens stated that, president Moon Jae-in’s declaration of ‘carbon neutrality’ in 2050 is not realistic. The Greens say that the government’s target of forty percent of greenhouse gas reduction by 2030 can’t be met since the reduction in the industrial sector was only 14.5 percent.

The Greens wrote in their website:How long do you want to deceive the people and the world?”

Korea Greens say the administration of Moon Jae-in wants to increase nuclear power reactors in the name of decarbonization.

“How long do you want to deceive the people and the world?”

Korea Green Party

Why are the Greens after the Government?

The claim of the Greens that the administration of Moon-Jae In is after more nuclear plants comes from a roadmap released by the South Korean government in which it is explained that a nuclear power plant called Shin-Kori Unit 6, is set to be shut down in 2084.

The plant is not completed yet and it is set to start working in 2024. The Greens say by the time the plant is going to get shut down it would have a 60-year lifespan and can be considered a serious nuclear threat.

The Greens emphasize that the leaders in the people in the presidential palace or the Blue House have time and again advocated for the introduction of small module reactors or SMR, so it’s safe to say that the government might try to increase new nuclear power generation in the name of ‘decarbonization’.

How have the Government Responded?

FILE PHOTO: South Korea’s President Moon Jae-in delivers a speech during the opening ceremony of the 21st National Assembly, in Seoul, South Korea July 16, 2020. Jung Yeon-je/Pool via REUTERS

After the press conference in Hungary on November 3rd, the South Korean president tried to calm the criticism. Moon Jae-in said: “We will not build new nuclear power plants, but close nuclear power plants that have reached the end of their design life to achieve carbon neutrality.”

The Korean Greens says the government’s plans for denuclearization are not clear. The only step that it took is to close an old power plant whose design life has already expired.

South Korea  Record on Greenhouse Emissions

Figures show that South Korea’s per capita greenhouse gas emissions were almost double the G20 average.

The country’s transport emissions per capita are also twice the G20 average.

Moreover, South Korea’s energy-related CO2 emissions are projected to increase even more. The number would be 4.7 percent more than what it used to be in 2020. This is greatly higher than the G20 average of 4.1 percent.

In the meantime, there are coal power plants under construction in South Korea which means the country will remain reliant on coal as a major energy source.

What does the Korea Green Party want?

The Green Party of South Korea says the very existence of nuclear power plants are catastrophic for humankind. They say all nuclear plants should be shut down. The Greens believe that the path shouldn’t be ‘carbon neutrality with nuclear power generation’, but ‘zero carbon emission with nuclear denuclearization’.

Korea’s Green Party called on the government of South Korea to overcome the ongoing climate crisis and carry on with denuclearization instead of what is t called deception and cover-up.

Aatefeh Padidar

Aatefeh (Aati) Padidar is a freelance journalist, content creator and researcher. She is interested in environmental issues, politics, literature and art.

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