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A nuclear- to-gas transition in South Korea: is it environmentally friendly or economically viable?

Hong, S ORCID: 0000-0001-6754-2291 and Brook, BW ORCID: 0000-0002-2491-1517 2018 , 'A nuclear- to-gas transition in South Korea: is it environmentally friendly or economically viable?' , Energy Policy, vol. 112 , pp. 67-73 , doi: 10.1016/j.enpol.2017.10.012.

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Abstract

Given the limited potential for renewable energy and high population density of South Korea, nuclearhas been an essential electricity generation option for supply of reliable power whilst reducing greenhouse-gasemissions and mitigating air pollution. However, the recently elected (2017) South Korean government has apolicy committing them to a phase-out of nuclear and coal, offset by an increase in the share of variable renewables.However, the main component of the power transition is set to be liquefied natural gas (LNG), due totechnical and economic barriers facing large-scale renewables. It is therefore critical for South Korea to developan evidence-based perspective on the details of the transition, before any future energy policy is decided. Herewe review: i) the national role of renewable sources given technical and economic limitations in South Korea; ii)potential environmental and economic issues with gas; and iii) potential barriers of and benefits to a nuclearpathway. Our conclusion is that, given the geographical and economic limitations facing South Korea, and theneed to reduce carbon emissions cost effectively, a nuclear pathway coupled with a moderate renewable shareoffers the most viable policy, with a gas-focused energy future being neither environmentally friendly noreconomic.

Item Type: Article
Authors/Creators:Hong, S and Brook, BW
Keywords: energy transition, gas, renewable energy, nuclear power, energy policy in South Korea
Journal or Publication Title: Energy Policy
Publisher: Elsevier Sci Ltd
ISSN: 0301-4215
DOI / ID Number: 10.1016/j.enpol.2017.10.012
Copyright Information:

© 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

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