Structuring climate policy in the Korean electricity sector : politics, institutions and mitigative capacity building

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Designing a climate policy for the Korean electricity sector is significant as well as imperative, because it is a major industry responsible for around a two-fifth of the greenhouse-gas emissions in Korea, the 8th largest nation in that respect. Now that Korea has announced a voluntary emission reduction target to limit the greenhouse-gas emissions 30 percent below its business-as-usual emission by 2020, structuring a web of climate policy tools for the electricity sector even takes on a sense of urgency to help Korea achieve such a target. Considering that the Korean government intends to achieve climate objectives with the national cap-and-trade scheme starting in 2015, I argued that such an effort will not be effective because of the opposition from the businesses and the industries. As an alternative approach I suggested what I termed "mitigative capacity building, " in the sense that it turns attention to an often neglected aspect of certain policy measures that are not totally related to climate policy per se but, when combined together, have broad implications for climate perspectives. I then assessed each policy option under the following four criteria: economic viability, technological feasibility/up-scalability, political acceptance and greenhouse-gas emission reduction potential. In the end I drew out a roadmap for the policy suggestion package, distinguishing what will be achievable in the short term from what will be possible in the medium to long term. Short-term options include: A gradual fuel switch from coal to natural gas; the renewable portfolio standards (RPS) with some changes in operation; the expansion of nuclear power; a phase-in of increases in the retail electricity price; and a focus on demand side management (DSM). Two other policy options labeled as a mid- to long-term policy tools are the smart grid and carbon capture and storage (CCS) because of the uncertainty of technological feasibility/up-scalability and the lack of economic viability at least in the foreseeable future.


Type of resource text
Form electronic; electronic resource; remote
Extent 1 online resource.
Publication date 2014
Issuance monographic
Language English


Associated with Shim, Sangmin
Associated with Stanford University, School of Law JSD.
Primary advisor Thompson, Barton H, Jr
Thesis advisor Thompson, Barton H, Jr
Thesis advisor Hensler, Deborah R, 1942-
Thesis advisor Wara, Michael
Advisor Hensler, Deborah R, 1942-
Advisor Wara, Michael


Genre Theses

Bibliographic information

Statement of responsibility Sangmin Shim.
Note Submitted to the School of Law JSD.
Thesis Thesis (JSD)--Stanford University, 2014.
Location electronic resource

Access conditions

© 2014 by Sangmin Shim
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 Unported license (CC BY-NC).

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