Former PM dedicated to green growth promotion
By Philip Iglauer
A former prime minister is at the center of a campaign to promote President Lee Myung-bak’s signature “green growth strategy.”
The Global Green Growth Institute (GGGI), headed by former Prime Minister Han Seung-soo, has been working hand in glove with the government, industry and civil society to promote Lee’s goal for achieving economic growth through energy efficiency and a reduction in the emissions of green house gasses.
But the green growth strategy’s key stone legislation that would reduce carbon dioxide and other green house gases has yet to be passed by the National Assembly.
GGGI was set up in June 2010, shortly after the government pumped billions of dollars to build a foundation for a future green economy by passing the “Framework Act on Low Carbon, Green Growth” in January of that year.
“The National Assembly passed the law on low carbon green growth and, based on that, the government has announced it looks to reduce carbon emissions 30 percent by 2020,” Han said in an email interview in December. “At the same time (the legislation) provided a framework for (an emissions trading scheme), but it has not yet started and we are in the process for preparing it.”
Han described GGGI as both “a think tank and an action center,” adding the organization is dedicated to promoting green growth, including policy tools aimed at achieving green growth but going beyond that, too, in Korea and around the world through strategic partnerships with governments, businesses, and other local and international entities.
“We are doing our share and trying to tackle the challenges in climate change in various ways,” Han said. “The green growth paradigm goes beyond tackling climate change.”
“Climate change issues today include adaptation, mitigation and finance, but changing the growth paradigm will help in solving the problem more favorably,” he said. “This is the approach adopted by the Global Green Growth Institute.”
Headquartered in Korea, GGGI looks to become an international organization in accordance with an agreement struck by country partners that helps developing and emerging countries pioneer a new “green growth” paradigm economic growth with climate and environmental sustainability.
The group receives financial support from an increasing number of countries around the world, including Denmark, the United Arab Emirates, Australia, Germany and Japan.