South Korea's carbon reduction target of 40 percent by 2030 reflects the country's strong determination to achieve carbon neutrality and its sense of responsibility as a member of the international community.
That's according to President Moon Jae-in Monday as the country finalized its blueprint for zero-out emissions by 2050.
The new target, known as the nationally determined contribution, is a dramatic hike from the current goal of a 26.3 percent drop from 2018 levels the year the country's emissions peaked.
"The country's fate depends on this. The government will not toss the burden to companies, but will spare no effort in terms of policy and fiscal support. It is also time for action by the public."
Moon said that it's an ambitious target noting the concerns of industry and labor about whether the country can manage, especially as the manufacturing sector takes up a large portion of the country's industrial structure.
In fact, South Korea needs to reduce its emissions by over 4 percent a year on average until 2030 which is about twice as much as countries whose emissions peaked earlier in the 1990s or 2000s.
The government on Monday also finalized two scenarios for net-zero carbon emissions by the year 2050 to give the country flexibility given that conditions can change focusing on developing and expanding sources for carbon absorption.
The president noted that over 10 billion U.S. dollars has been earmarked from next year's budget for the initiative.
Moon pointed out the need for a transition to renewable energy and to supply more electric and hydrogen powered cars.
"It is an ambitious goal toward a path that no one has taken before. It's an era where low-carbon technologies will determine a nation's competitiveness. The government will increase investment for tech development and spare no effort to find new growth engines and create new jobs to lead the carbon neutral era."
Monday's proposals will be subject to Cabinet approval next week after which South Korea will announce at the UN climate change conference in Glasgow in November.
Kim Min-ji, Arirang News.