Going green could gain billions of dollars for South Korea, if it actively adopts decarbonization policies.
That's according to global consulting firm Deloitte.
Its recent report shows that South Korea's economy could grow by 2 percent a year over the modeled decades to 2070, gaining 2.3 quadrillion won, or 1.9 trillion dollars, in economic output.
But its fortunes depend on whether the world can keep its global warming target of one.five degrees above pre-industrial levels.
After declaring its 2050 net zero target last year, South Korea, this month, raised its greenhouse gas reduction goal from 26.3 percent to 40 percent for 2030.
But corporate action is also needed.
A recent survey conducted by the Federation of Korean Industries found that nearly 70 percent of businesses were wary about the emission goal, citing financial burden and the country's carbon-heavy industrial landscape.
But experts warn that counting the cost today will lead to billions more in losses in the decades to come.
"Dominant economic projections tend to assume that economies will grow according to a “business as usual” trend completely unaffected by the damages caused by climate change.. ( ). The reality is, if we continue with “business as usual” now, it won’t lead to business as usual in the future."
Analysts warn that if the global average approaches 3 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels, most sectors of the economy would suffer from the impact of weather-related disasters and climate change on productivity, health, the environment, and greater society.
In South Korea's case, 232 trillion won, or 2 billion dollars could go up in smoke by the year 2050, roughly one percent of its GDP.
But, the Seoul-based expert says, with innovation and an ecosystem change, Korea's auto and steel sectors could pioneer the green transformation.
Hyundai Motor, for one, has been working on cutting edge hydrogen cars and POSCO has been investing in hydrogen-based steel making.
The government aims to drive more corporate investment in hydrogen, biofuels and other new and renewable energy, as well as for sustainable business practices to lead the world's carbon-neutral future.
Oh Soo-young, Arirang News.