As various countries explore the merits of green growth in their policies and programs, the Republic of Korea’s (ROK) transition toward green growth serves as an exemplary model. The report examines why and how the ROK has pursued green growth as a national priority and as a development paradigm, sharing major milestones achieved in various areas such as greenhouse gas emissions, green technology, resource efficiency, and energy security.
Drawing on the expertise of sector specialists and practitioners, the report highlights the processes, outcomes, and key takeaways in advancing green growth planning and implementation in the Korean context to address fossil fuel dependency, economic slowdown, and climate change. It highlights how a confluence of milestones created a strong enabling environment for green growth in the ROK, laying out the institutional, legal, and programmatic platform for green growth.
The ROK’s green growth model is distinctively characterized by strong top-down leadership that elevated green growth as a national priority, and collective actions across all sectors of the economy and society. The ROK’s model of “low carbon green growth” underscores the need to continue growing economically, but under a scenario where greenhouse gas emissions are reduced at specific levels to mitigate climate change – a process which is to generate new industries and jobs.
The key takeaways in the ROK’s green growth experience will hopefully provide useful lessons for other countries in advancing more vigorous, long-term, and country-driven engagement on green growth. It will serve to inform policymakers, experts, advisers, scholars, and the broader development community of the emerging evidence for green growth and guide them in transforming the trade-offs into synergies in the form of bankable projects and win-win investments with tangible impacts on the ground.