This year is the first year of implementation of the Paris Agreement, which was adopted at COP21 in 2015, and it made ‘climate action’ gain more international attention. One of the main goals of the Korean New Deal, which was initiated to overcome the economic and social crisis caused by COVID-19, is the transition to a low-carbon society. In particular, the Green New Deal, which is led by the Ministry of Environment, aims to shift to an eco-friendly, low-carbon, and green economy.
The Paris Agreement, the Sustainable Development Goals, and Korean Green New Deal all aim for a sustainable future. The Sustainable Development Goals cover all sectors of economy, society and environment, and ‘climate action’ is one of its 17 goals. This presentation intends to discuss the relationship between the projects under the Korean Green New Deal and the Korean Sustainable Development Goals.
Korean Sustainable Development Goals (K-SDGs) were established in 2018 to localize the UN Sustainable Development Goals by incorporating Korea’s specific national circumstances. Many of the Green New Deal projects are directly related to eight of the K-SDGs: 6. Healthy and Safe Water Management, 7. Eco-friendly Production and Consumption of Energy, 9. Industrial Growth and Innovation, 11. Sustainable City and Housing, 12. Sustainable Production and 13. Climate Change Response, etc.
It appears that social goals such as gender equality, inequality, and inclusiveness are relatively under addressed in the Green New Deal. However, since another axis of the Korean New Deal, “Stronger Safety Net,” focuses on protecting the vulnerable, it complements the implementation of the goals related to equality and social inclusion.
The government intends to prepare scenarios for greenhouse gas reduction and materialize the results of the Korean Green New Deal. In particular, institutional and policy measures will come into place to ensure a just transition in the process towards carbon neutrality. Enhancing the implementation of relevant sustainable development goals through carbon neutrality while securing social equity through just transition is the key to achieving carbon neutrality and sustainable development goals at the same time.
Article 6 of the Paris Agreement aims at establishing a framework for countries to cooperate on NDC achievement, including through market-based approaches. Article 6 has therefore the potential to create a unique driver for the use of international carbon markets as well as domestic carbon pricing policies. Research has also shown that Article 6 has the potential to significantly lower the cost of meeting NDC targets, therefore unlocking more ambition at lower costs. Article 6 also provides a unique entry point for private sector engagement in climate action.
Implementing rules for Article 6 are still being negotiated and they are one of the few unresolved issues in UNFCCC negotiations. Attempts at finding agreement on a common ruleset for Article 6 proved unsuccessful both at COP24 in Katowice, when the Paris Rule Book was adopted, and at COP25 in Madrid. The adoption of implementing rules for Article 6 is now on the agenda for COP26, which will take place in November 2021 in the UK.
At COP26, negotiations on Article 6 will likely face the same challenges as in previous years. At the same time, outside the negotiation process, Article 6 pilots and real world implementations of Article 6 approaches are going ahead, and will provide valuable lessons learnt for the UNFCCC process.
This presentation will provide context on the key components of Article 6, its functioning and its economic and mitigation potential. The presentation will also cover the state of play in the Article 6 discussion, outlining the main roadblocks in the negotiations. It will analyse the implications of the COP25 outcome and will reflect on the way forward for the Article 6 negotiations.
Korean government submitted its long term low carbon development strategy, “2050 Carbon Neutrality Strategy of the Republic of Korea” in December 2020 to UNFCCC secretariat. This presentation reviews the key components of the 2050 Carbon Neutrality Strategy and investigates the challenges ahead. Facing significant economic slow-down of Korean economy due to COVID19, the Green New Deal and the Digital New Deal are the two pillars to make the Korean economy into the carbon neutral by 2050. Massive development and deployment of innovative green technology is the engine of transition of Korean economy. For example, electric power, generated from renewable sources, will be the main energy type used in the economy. The self-driving vehicles will use electricity or hydrogen fuels in the transport sector.
However, transition to carbon neutral economy by 2050 faces a lot of challenges in Korea because it requires very rapid negative growth rate in GHG emissions from now. It needs very well organized strategies and detailed plans for the successful and harmonious outcomes. The transition is not a simple solution to address an environmental issue alone, but is to build a comprehensive and innovative pathway to carbon neutral economy by addressing changes in industrial structure, job security and retraining of the workforces for net zero economy.
It concludes that a well-designed plan needs to be announced to the public as soon as possible in order to have the consumers and the producers prepared the dramatic changes in their lifestyles, production process as well as the products produced. In addition, carbon prices will be the principal driver to give incentives to the development and deployment of innovative green technology as well as the change in the consumption behaviors.
The German Council for Sustainable Development (RNE) is a multi-stakeholder body that provides recommendations to the German government along the German Sustainable Development Strategy. In doing so, it engages in recommendations and coherence for the national climate plan and pathway towards climate neutrality as well as sustainable development policymaking. Due to a recent decision of the German Constitutional Court, climate action, intergenerational justice and sustainable development must play a major role in policy making, unleashing an enormous dynamic and competition for pathways for socially just climate neutrality before 2050. Building better forward is one element among several that needs to serve this new and ambitious climate and sustainability goals in Germany.
Since the UK put net zero GHG emission goals by 2050 into legislation in 2019 there have been some further significant developments. In April 2021 it was announced that the UK will reduce emissions by 78% by 2035 compared to 1990 levels in its sixth carbon budget, which would take the UK more than three-quarters of the way to reaching net zero by 2050. This was in line with the recommendation from the independent Climate Change Committee that has described the path to net zero as part of a blueprint for a fully decarbonized UK which meets the Paris Agreement stipulation of ‘highest possible ambition’. The pathway is challenging but also hugely advantageous, creating new industrial opportunities and ensuring wider gains for the nation’s health and for nature. However, there is concern about whether there are sufficient policies to meet these targets and sufficient action and investment on the ground.
This presentation will explore the UK’s net zero GHG emission goals and milestone reduction targets, the associated governance system, the expected costs of achieving the targets, the transition pathway and the required policies and investments in key emitting sectors. The key issues and challenges facing the UK in achieving these targets will be summarized and lessons for other jurisdictions will be highlighted.