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Methane Capture and Power Generation
Korea takes active steps to prevent methane emissions which are being generated by 550 m3 from landfills, resulting in over 900,000 tons of CO2 emissions reduction per year. This effort is supported by the CDM project, especially by turning landfill gas into an energy source, as well as the 50MW capacity of landfill gas power generation facility, which has been in operation since March 2007.
With the enforcement of the 1st Master Plan for the Metropolitan Air Quality Management (Nov, 2005), a low pollution program for in-used diesel vehicles running on the road and a policy to promote and encourage the use of low-polluting vehicles have been put in place. According to the low pollution program for in-used diesel vehicles on the road, 390,000 emission reduction devices were installed on diesel vehicles, 180,000 vehicles were retrofitted with low emission engines like LPG engines, and 150,000 old and superannuated vehicles were scrapped, leading to a total of 720,000 vehicles turning greener and less-polluting. It also brought about the reduction of 3,489 tons of PM10, 19,041 tons of NOx, and 4,350 tons of VOCs. In addition, the policy to promote the use of low-polluting vehicles replaces 89% of metropolitan buses with CNG buses and creates the market base for hybrid vehicles and electric vehicles. This effort reduces 1,342 tons of NOx and 1.34 million tons of PM10.
Tropospheric Ozone Reduction
As the Republic of Korea strives to reduce volatile organic compounds (VOCs), it enacted the Special Act on Metropolitan Air Quality Improvement, which restricts the content level of VOCs in organic solvent for paints and requires the installation of oil mist recovery facility at gas station. Consequently, the ban on supplying and selling of organic solvent that contains VOCs more than what is permitted has been effective in reducing 34,752 tons of VOCs. The act also helps reduce 3,716 tons of VOCs by preventing arsenic acid emitted while filling the tank.
Since the regulation on the management of the refrigerant used for air conditioning was enacted in October 2013, progress has been made to develop an alternative refrigerant and treatment technology. This effort is expected to help realize effective management of air conditioning refrigerant whose main element is HFC.
Tripartite Cooperation on Environment
Environmental Ministers of the Republic of Korea, Japan and China noted the need to share necessary information and conduct joint research on the control technology and management policy regarding short-lived climate forces at the 16th TEMM held in Daegu, Republic of Korea (Apr. 28~29th, 2014). The three ministers also recognized the need to strengthen the cooperation on Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS) technology so as to respond to climate change.
Korea is working to identify the impact of Atmospheric Brown Cloud (ABC), of which soot is one of the major components, on climate change, precipitation and agricultural productivity by engaging in the International Joint ABC Observation as part of UNEP brown haze project.
Joint Research on the Development of GAINS-Korea Model
National Institute of Environmental Research (NIER) of the Republic of Korea and International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA) have conducted a joint research to develop Greenhouse Gas and Air Pollution Interactions and Synergies (GAINS)-Korea, a model appropriately reflecting the Korean circumstances, so as to reduce both air pollutants and substances contributing to climate change and to maximize the effects of policy measures taken.