* Date : 2016-11-11
Renewable energy has emerged as an eco-friendly alternative to fossil fuels to mitigate air pollution and climate change. However, the share of renewables in Korea's primary energy supply is the lowest among the OECD members states. What is behind the country's heavy reliance on nuclear and coal power sources? An eco-friendly energy town in Hongcheon, Gangwon-do Province shows an example of how unwanted facilities like landfills and sewage treatment plants can be used to produce biogas and electricity.
While there are many types of renewables, Korea is a global leader in tidal power generation. Located off the west cost, the Sihwa Lake Tidal Power Station is the largest of its kind in the world. Another pollution-free energy source is geothermal energy that originates from the heat retained within the Earth. The Seoul city hall building uses geothermal heat to power more than 50% of its heating and air conditioning systems. Aside from tidal and geothermal sources, biomass is another form of future energy that is garnering attention. An example of solid biomass is wood chips that are waste wood cut into easily combustible chips. They are used to generate electricity at a biomass power plant located in Donghae, Gangwon-do Province. The Advanced Biomass R&D Center specializes in developing biofuels from algae.