One Less Nuclear Power Plant
Environmental Policy Division,Seoul Metropolitan Government

A. Problem Analysis

 1. What was the problem before the implementation of the initiative?
1. Massive power outages nationwide. On September 15, 2011, an unusually hot day with temperatures averaging 31°C, various cities throughout Korea, including Seoul, experienced massive power outages spurred by the sudden and widespread use of air conditioners—an extreme case of energy demand outstripping energy supply. According to a Korea Electrotechnology Research Institute (KERI) survey, the power outages affected 1.62 million households nationwide, and 62,782 official complaints were lodged with local governments over interruptions in business operations and other processes. In 2004, Korean power plants held reserve power at the level of 12.2 percent; by 2011, this level had dropped to 5.5 percent. In 2010, the energy consumption rate in Korea stood at 10.9 percent, but by 2011 had risen to 18.8 percent. Disturbing statistics, especially when we consider the ongoing threats of climate change. 2. Fear surrounding nuclear power plants. The nationwide power outage triggered fear, since it revived in the minds of many Koreans the tragic nuclear power plant failure that occurred in Fukushima, Japan, on March 11, 2011, and brought to the surface questions concerning the operational capacity of existing nuclear power plants in Korea, many of which were aged, obsolete, and showing signs of malfunction. As nuclear power plants account for over 30 percent of all power generated in Korea, public fear and anxiety over a nuclear power plant failure peaked. As public consensus on the need for safer energy alternatives began to form, the demand for the demolishment of nuclear power plants grew stronger. 3. Social conflict and controversy over the energy policy. In 2008, local citizens in a town called Miryang began protests against power companies’ installation of transmission towers in the town. These protests continued for years, and tragically culminated in the self-immolation of one protestor on January 16, 2012. The nation’s energy policy and the power transmission facilities established under it became hotbeds of controversy in local communities, causing the Korean public to rethink the country’s energy policy and seek out alternatives.

B. Strategic Approach

 2. What was the solution?
1. Citizens, policy experts, and a city government united to reduce dependency on nuclear energy. Seoul Mayor Park Won-soon, inaugurated into office in October 2011, took a proactive approach to managing the energy crisis and climate change early on, organizing around 20 policy workshops, public debates, and other meetings to hear the public’s stance on such issues. In April 2012, the city government launched a new meeting group, comprised of representatives from the economic, education, and media fields, as well as voluntary groups. The meeting group finally released the One Less Nuclear Power Plant Plan (OLNPPP), which envisioned reducing the demand for nuclear energy by promoting new and renewable energy and more efficient energy use. 2. One Less Nuclear Power Plant: Lowering dependency on nuclear power. The OLNPPP involves lowering energy consumption and increasing the amounts of eco-friendly energy generated to the level of replacing the capacity of at least one nuclear power (200 tons of oil equivalent, or TOE) by 2014, and increasing Seoul’s energy self-sufficiency rate from the current 2.8 percent to at least 20 percent by 2020. The plan epitomizes Seoul’s commitment to establishing a safe and sustainable energy system throughout the city that reduces the occurrence of power outages and other such risks, but can nonetheless stably withstand them should they occur. 3. Major goals. The specific goals of the OLNPPP include: generating 410,000 TOE new and renewable energy; saving 1,110,000 TOE energy by fostering the use of more energy-efficient systems and facilities; and saving 480,000 TOE energy through the voluntary daily efforts of ordinary citizens. ① Energy production. Seoul intends to establish new solar and fuel-cell power plants, as well as co-generation plants running on biogas, and expand heating services based on wastewater heat (10°C minimum). The city will also require developers to equip every new building with new and renewable energy facilities. Currently, there are 15 projects launched or being planned in the area of energy production. ② Energy efficiency. Seoul now obligates the application of energy design criteria in new, large buildings, and for existing buildings, supports building retrofits and the use of high-efficiency LED light bulbs. Other initiatives include mandatory carpooling and the No Driving Day system at large public buildings. To date, Seoul has launched 42 projects to achieve its energy efficiency goals. ③ Energy saving. Seoul has launched a total of 126 energy-saving projects based on citizens’ initiatives and suggestions. These include the Eco-Mileage Program, which requires public buildings and citizens to reduce energy consumption by 5 percent each year; the Energy Guardian Angels Program, led by students who campaign for energy efficiency at schools; and Green Leaders, citizens who volunteer to educate the public on energy-saving techniques. Another initiative is the Recycle Station Program, which promotes the recycling and reuse of waste materials.

 3. How did the initiative solve the problem and improve people’s lives?
1. Replacing the conflict-ridden, supplier-centered view of energy production. Seoul’s OLNPPP is noticeably different from the central government’s energy policy, which forces the public to reduce power consumption whenever problems arise on the supplier side (e.g. in cases like spikes in international oil prices). The Korean government has been expanding the number of power plants (including nuclear power plants) and related facilities to meet the high demand for energy. The OLNPPP, however, enforces a smarter strategy, since it is based on the production of new and renewable energy and reform of the consumption system. Its overarching goal, in other words, is to reduce energy demand and dependency on destructive sources. The plan provides long-term goals and targets that together bring into existence a sustainable energy-saving system citywide. 2. Shaping the energy policy through citizen initiatives. The OLNPPP is unique, as well, because it has largely been shaped and implemented based on citizen initiatives. The Citizens’ Committee for One Less Nuclear Power Plant and the Executive Committee for One Less Nuclear Power Plant, each comprised of citizens from diverse backgrounds, held 62 meetings in total from 2012 to June 2014 in the search for new and better energy-saving initiatives. The two committees also monitor the progress of their programs and ensure that policy objectives are being met. With the OLNPPP, the energy policy is no longer under the exclusive purview of the government. Citizens can now decide the energy policy they would like to follow voluntarily. The various projects of the OLNPPP also crucially depend upon the voluntary participation of citizens. The Energy Self-Sufficiency Neighborhood Project, which requires locals to devise and implement their own new and renewable energy measures, has attracted 7,400 participating households so far. The Green Leaders and the Energy Guardian Angels programs have seen the participation of over 30,000 citizens. Indeed, the success of the many and varied energy-saving projects under the OLNPPP can in large part be attributed to the vital and active participation of citizens.

C. Execution and Implementation

 4. In which ways is the initiative creative and innovative?
1. Institutional reinforcements and infrastructure support. The Korean government announced the official end of its Feed in Tariff (FIT) policy—used to promote new and renewable energy—in 2012. Picking up where the central government left off, Seoul introduced the Seoul FIT policy, under which public land in the city is offered at reasonable rents for the creation of new and renewable energy facilities. In particular, the rent amount is determined based on the amounts of eco-friendly energy such facilities generate on their own. Seoul also commissioned a survey on the conditions of building and residence rooftops in the city, which resulted in the Seoul Solar Map. This map provides information on the potential for solar energy use citywide, and in doing so encourages citizens to tap this valuable energy source. Along these lines, the city government also teamed up with the Seoul Metropolitan Office of Education to expand the use of school rooftops and other facilities to achieve greater energy efficiency. 2. Architectural improvements. In an attempt to provide a fundamental solution to the energy demand of large public buildings, Seoul reinforced its Green Building Design Criteria, applying the criteria in construction permit application reviews from 2013. In 2012, the city offered its first Building Retrofitting Program (BRP) loans for public and commercial buildings as well as for residences. The interest on BRP loans was lowered from 2.5 percent in 2012 to 2 percent in 2013, and again to 1.75 percent in 2014, while the ceiling on amortization was raised to KRW 2 billion. 3. Incentives for civic participation. The Eco-Mileage Program provides incentives for citizens to make voluntary efforts to reduce power consumption. The Energy Guardian Angels and the Green Leaders also serve as energy conservation activists at schools and in neighborhoods. Citizens are invited to share their experiences in saving energy through various channels. 4. New analysis techniques and global research. The city commissioned the Seoul Institute to measure the outcomes of the OLNPPP programs, specifically their energy-saving and greenhouse gas-reducing effects. For this a new method for analyzing such impacts was developed through cooperation with academia, the Korea Economics Institute, power plant companies, and the Climate and Energy Research Center. Moreover, separate research projects were carried out by various environmental research centers and universities to analyze global environmental trends in transportation, architecture, manufacturing, and power generation, and to survey existing policies to which Seoul might refer in implementing its own energy policy. 5. Reduced transport and energy demands. Seoul’s energy-efficiency projects are expansive, covering many key areas. They include, for example, the provision of BRP loans for over 20,000 residences and buildings, the distribution of 6.79 million LED light bulbs, and insulation and remodeling works for low-income households. In an effort to encourage the use of public transportation, the city newly created transfer parking lots near subway and bus stations. Seoul also incorporated fuel efficiency into its performance evaluation criteria for intra-city bus carriers, a move to encourage them to adopt more fuel-efficient transport systems, and intra-city bus drivers are now trained on eco-friendly driving as well as on the use of fuel-efficiency devices. Large public and commercial buildings are now required to enforce No Driving Days, and are offered incentives to encourage them to do so such as discounts on traffic-inducing charges. The city also increased the number of median bus lanes and pedestrian streets so as to minimize traffic congestion and energy waste, and reduced operation of intra-city buses on weekends and holidays by 3 percent. As well, the owners of aged diesel cars are given car-scrapping subsidies to reduce fuel waste. 6. Push down energy consumption by 1.17 million TOE per year. In 2012, the first year the OLNPPP was in effect, energy consumption was reduced by only 330,000 TOE due to the relative brevity of the projects implemented and the inadequacy of preparations. By 2013, however, the OLNPPP had reduced energy consumption by 920,000 TOE. Notably, Seoul residents consumed 380,000 TOE less than they did the previous year (2012), proving the plan’s effectiveness in lowering energy demand. In the first six months of 2014, the plan’s projects together cut energy consumption by 780,000 TOE, thereby helping Seoul to achieve its goal of reducing energy consumption by over 2 million TOE—the equivalent of one nuclear power plant—6 months ahead of schedule.

 5. Who implemented the initiative and what is the size of the population affected by this initiative?
1. Committee for One Less Nuclear Power Plant: Representing diverse perspectives. The Committee for One Less Nuclear Power Plant is comprised of representatives from diverse fields and sectors of society, including environmental organizations, religious groups, economic and research institutions, academia, the arts, and media. LessThe committee held over 60 plenary and subcommittee meetings (together with the Executive Committee for One Less Nuclear Power Plant) from 2012 to 2014, at which OLNPPP projects were discussed in depth and at length. 2. OLNPPP Management Department within the city government. Seoul established the OLNPPP Management Department, consisting of five members, to ensure the effective implementation of the plan, and organized the Citizens’ Task Force, made up of 10 public officials, to induce citizen cooperation and suggestions. Along with the Committee and the Executive Committee for One Less Nuclear Power Plant, these new government bodies analyze and monitor the progress of the plan’s projects, and provide other forms of support required to ensure their success. 3. Affiliated institutions and special purpose entities. The OLNPPP is a multi-departmental initiative, involving all departments of the city government of Seoul, as well as the Seoul Metro (operating Subway Lines 1 through 4), the Seoul Agro-Fisheries and Food Corporation, 25 district offices of Seoul, the Seoul Metropolitan Office of Education, and other public organizations. The city also established special purpose entities, such as the Korea Finance Corporation, to handle specific tasks, including the replacement of light bulbs in subway stations with LED bulbs. Moreover, Seoul enlisted the participation and counsel of almost 40 private and voluntary associations, including the Korea Photovoltaic Industry Association and Seoul Citizens’ Sunlight Power Stations. Moreover a public idea contest, centered on how to save energy, was held from 2012 to 2014, out of which 126 suggestions were translated into actual projects that are now being carried out by local religious organizations, universities, public libraries, and cooperatives.
 6. How was the strategy implemented and what resources were mobilized?
1. Financial resources: Minimizing the burden on the public. From 2012 to June 2014, Seoul invested KRW 247.3 billion of its budget and public funds into OLNPPP projects, with the central government providing an additional KRW 48.7 billion. The private sector also made significant contributions, including KRW 63.5 billion for the creation of solar energy facilities and KRW 230 billion for the establishment of fuel-cell power plants. Mayoral prerogatives, such as the LED light bulb distribution project and the BRP loans, further elicited KRW 1.0362 trillion from the private sector, with the total amount of investments made in the first phase of the OLNPPP thus reaching KRW 1.3322 trillion. These investments induced KRW 2.6092 trillion in production-and created over 20,000 new jobs. 2. Technical resources: Specializing government departments and private-sector technological experts. The OLNPPP led to the creation of the Climate and Environment Headquarters at the city government, which consists of some 200 public officials assigned to six new departments, including the Green Energy Division overseeing the production of new and renewable energy; and the Climate and Air Quality Management Division supervising the energy-saving target management scheme and the Eco-Mileage Program. Twenty-five district offices throughout Seoul launched their own OLNPPP teams to ensure effective implementation of local projects. 3. Human resources. ① Civic participation at the forefront of energy-saving efforts Over 30,000 citizens and students volunteered as Energy Consultants, Energy Planners, Energy Guardian Angels, and Green Leaders to promote energy-saving efforts at schools, work, construction sites, homes, and the like. These volunteers actively shared information on energy-saving techniques and the importance cutting down energy consumption with the public, thus helping to eliminate various causes of energy waste in daily life. ② OLNPPP network, representing diverse perspectives and interests. The Committee for One Less Nuclear Power Plant is made up of citizens and representatives from diverse fields (environmental groups, academia, media, religious groups, etc.). Headed by the Mayor of Seoul and chaired by two citizen representatives, the 19 members of the committee form a multilayered social network on energy saving, allowing for diverse insights on Seoul’s energy policy. The Executive Committee for One Less Nuclear Power Plant, led jointly by the head of the Climate and Environment Headquarters and a citizen representative, includes 48 members divided into the four subcommittees of new and renewable energy production, energy efficiency, energy saving, and public communications. The executive committee monitors the progress of various OLNPPP projects and provides the required support and resources. With distinguished members from various research centers, corporations, and environmental groups, the executive committee plays a central role in developing and implementing Seoul’s energy policies that seek to reduce energy demand and confront climate change simultaneously.

 7. Who were the stakeholders involved in the design of the initiative and in its implementation?
Launched in May 2012, under the slogan, “New Energy Culture Led by Citizens, a Change for the Better in Seoul,” the OLNPPP achieved its original objective of reducing energy consumption by 2 million TOE well ahead of schedule. Based on the success of the first-phase projects, Seoul is now implementing the second-phase projects, under the slogan, “Seoul: the Capital of Energy Efficiency.” The main achievements of the first 2 years of the OLNPPP are summarized below. 1. Greater public awareness of the energy issue, and consolidation of energy-saving culture The most significant result of the OLNPPP by far is that its projects have raised public awareness of the importance of energy conservation and environmental preservation, an awareness which has in turn made a substantial difference in citizens’ daily lives. The 1.68 million citizens who have taken part in the Eco-Mileage Program and the 50,000 or so Energy Guardian Angels and other volunteers have been indispensable in shaping and disseminating a new energy culture throughout Seoul. Because the price of electricity is quite low in Korea in comparison to other countries, few citizens until now have ever felt compelled to cut down on their energy spending. Thanks to the OLNPPP, however, an increasing number of citizens are coming to realize the danger and cost of nuclear power plants, a realization that has led to recognition of the vital importance of environmental sustainability achieved through wiser energy policies and practices. 2. Significant boost for new and renewable energy Korea’s solar energy facilities together produced 22 megawatts of electricity per year for over a decade leading up to the introduction of the OLNPPP. Thanks to the new policy, however, Seoul’s solar energy facilities today produce 70 megawatts of electricity, and streetlamps in Seoul are now equipped with solar energy devices. The city has significantly expanded its new and renewable energy infrastructure as well, adding a new fuel-cell power plant capable of generating 40 megawatts of electricity as well as new small hydro power plants. Further, heat generated from wastewater treatment and urban waste incinerators is being reused in districts for heating residences and buildings. The biogas generated in the treatment of sludge is refined and purified so that it can be reused as a fuel. Sludge from dehydrated human waste is sold to thermal plants as a new fuel. These new power plants and related facilities together help Seoul reproduce energy of up to 120,000 TOE a year from waste materials. Seoul Metro, the Agro-Fisheries and Food Corporation, and other government-affiliated institutions have also begun to recycle waste energy to meet their energy demands, using, for example, ground heat to meet air conditioning and heating needs. The new energy initiatives in these public institutions have pushed down energy consumption by 260,000 TOE a year. 3. Institutional reforms and structural changes as energy solutions Seoul introduced and reinforced Green Building Design Criteria, which obligates new large public and commercial buildings to adopt various energy-saving measures in their designs and construction, with the goal of reducing the energy demand of these buildings by 352,000 TOE a year. Seoul now also requires that existing buildings install better insulators and window frames to minimize energy and heat losses, and provides subsidies for repair and renovation of welfare facilities and low-income households for greater energy efficiency. The city, moreover, mandated energy assessments of 1,400 or so small buildings to identify and eliminate causes of energy waste. The success of the energy-efficient LED light bulb distribution project can be attributed in large part to extensive investment and participation by the public sector. The project resulted in the replacement of 950,000 light bulbs throughout the city, including those in public buildings and on roads. The private sector matched this by replacing 5.84 million light bulbs with LED bulbs. The project on the whole has helped Seoul save energy in the amount of 199,000 TOE a year. Seoul further reduced energy consumption by 123,000 TOE by promoting car sharing, banning the idling of car engines, providing car-scrapping subsidies for aged diesel cars, and distributing eco-driving devices. These institutional and fundamental changes have helped to create a new energy-efficient structure, which has helped to push down energy consumption in the city by 870,000 TOE a year. 4. Supporting daily energy-saving practices The Eco-Mileage Program, intended to cut down energy consumption in households and small businesses by 5 percent, originally had 500,000 or so participants prior to the introduction of the OLNPPP. By June 2014, however, the number of participants had multiplied to 1.68 million, thus helping the city to reduce energy consumption by 450,000 TOE a year. Citizens also began to turn daily wastes—including cooking oil—into new sources of energy, thereby further saving 70,000 TOE. Keeping indoor temperatures at an even level further led to pushing down energy demand by 320,000 TOE. Moreover, 93 public organizations in Seoul have voluntarily adopted their own energy-saving goals and objectives, together saving 55,000 TOE a year. These daily practices help Seoul reduce energy consumption by 910,000 TOE a year.

 8. What were the most successful outputs and why was the initiative effective?
1. New energy analysis method Seoul City enlisted the help of the Seoul Institute to monitor the progress of the OLNPPP, requesting the development of a new method for analyzing the energy-saving effects of the plan’s diverse projects. The new method involves converting the amount of energy produced and consumed per source—such as electricity, urban gas, and gasoline—into a common unit (i.e., TOE), and converting it again into the amount of greenhouse gas emissions reduced. 2. Advisory meetings for strategy and progress reviews The city government’s Climate and Environment Headquarters held dozens of meetings in 2013, and 11 more until the end of June 2014, during which representatives of all six departments making up the headquarters partook in discussions and reviews of the projects thus far implemented. Since its inception in April 2012, the Executive Committee for One Less Nuclear Power Plant alone has held 10 meetings for discussion on OLNPPP project strategies and new measures for energy saving. The opinions shared at the more than 50 meetings held by the executive committee and its subcommittees so far were shared with the public through debates and forums prior to being translated into actual policy measures. A good example of a new program introduced thus is the Mini-Solar Energy Facility Distribution Project. The idea was first suggested in an executive committee meeting, and was developed into the current program after citizens voiced their suggestions on how to subsidize and install mini-solar energy facilities that could generate 250 watts of electricity each. 3. Local energy-saving projects The OLNPPP also involves evaluating the energy-saving efforts of each of Seoul’s 25 districts, and awarding exemplary districts with incentives and grants. Seoul provides incentives for the creation of new and renewable energy facilities, including those for solar energy; distributes LED light bulbs and offers BRP loans and other measures for enhancing energy efficiency; and makes concerted efforts to increase the number of Eco-Mileage participants, etc., to reduce energy consumption. Districts that fare well on annual evaluations are each given up to KRW 500 million in incentives. Exemplary cases are also presented and shared at meetings of the vice-chiefs of the 25 districts. The districts of Seongbuk-gu, Gangnam-gu, and others have significantly reduced their energy demands by installing LED bulbs in large public parking garages, saving more than KRW 150 million each per year in cost. Dobong-gu was also praised for the solar energy facility it installed on the walls of an old office building, an initiative that led other districts to install similar solar energy facilities in various public buildings, like school rooftops, thus promoting energy efficiency citywide.

 9. What were the main obstacles encountered and how were they overcome?
1. Population density, dried-up rivers, lack of awareness, and other obstacles Seoul is one of the world’s most densely populated cities, with high-rise buildings occupying almost the entire city except for a few mountainous areas. As Seoul is surrounded by mountains on three sides except the western front, wind velocity is limited to 2.3 meters per second on average, making wind energy almost impossible. The concentration of residential and commercial buildings also forbids the creation of major solar energy facilities. Most rivers in the city, except for the Han River, run dry year round except in the monsoon season, making hydro power generation also unimaginable. The relatively cheap price of electricity in Korea, moreover, has delayed the development of effective new and renewable energy. And with the central government officially concluding its FIT policy in 2012, incentives for more sustainable energy initiatives had come to a halt. 2. Making use of available public land for small hydro power plants Seoul sought to overcome its environmental obstacles by making the most use of available public land and buildings, including subway car garages, basic environmental facilities, and water purification centers, to install solar energy and fuel-cell power facilities. As the central government abolished its FIT program, which had been providing suppliers of new and renewable energy with financial assistance to compensate for their losses since October 2011, Seoul introduced its own FIT program, operated based on the city’s Climate Change Fund, to encourage power suppliers to develop and provide sustainable energy. The city, moreover, installed small hydro power plants at water purification and sewage treatment centers, thus overcoming the scarcity of local river resources with technical ingenuity. 3. Research and financial assistance to encourage building retrofitting Developers and citizens were reluctant to participate in the BRP because of the high initial costs, with the cheap price of electricity making it difficult for investors to reap returns on their investment in the short term. Seoul confronted this challenge by providing BRP loans at favorable rates (now 1.75 percent per annum). The city also commissioned research projects on energy policies and technological trends worldwide, for the purpose of reforming and improving the BRP. 4. Lack of public awareness As the busy citizens of Seoul had neither the time nor the desire to learn about the importance of energy efficiency and sustainable energy on their own, the city brought such information to them through the 50,000 volunteers who acted as Energy Consultants, Green Leaders, Energy Planners, and Energy Guardian Angels. Seoul also provided free energy assessments on small buildings that had no legal obligation to report the amounts of energy they consumed, thus encouraging the participation of owners and tenants in OLNPPP projects.

D. Impact and Sustainability

 10. What were the key benefits resulting from this initiative?
1. Ensuring sustainable supplies of energy and reducing greenhouse gas emissions The OLNPPP is significant first and foremost for the degree of sustainability it added to the urban energy policy, and for the extent to which it mitigated the public’s worries. Moreover, the plan raised public awareness of the need to reduce energy consumption, and thereby enhanced the sustainability of the entire city by minimizing energy dependency. The plan also reduced dependency on fossil fuels and boosted the use of new and renewable energy sources, both of which help to minimize greenhouse gas emissions. 2. Changing the local energy policy and culture for the better The central government has been in complete control of Korea’s energy policy for decades due to the country’s focus on industrialization and economic growth. The Korean government has traditionally emphasized steady supplies of energy so as not to disrupt industrial activities. This explains the great favor thermal and nuclear power plants enjoy in this country, as these are modes of power generation over which policymakers can exert greater control in comparison to other alternatives. These power plants require major transmission facilities—a thorny issue that has spurred controversy and conflict among residents of the areas where such facilities are built. The OLNPPP is positioned opposite to this heavy-handed, supplier-centered energy policy model, providing a successful example of a local energy policy. The OLNPPP approaches the energy issue by reducing the demand for and dependency on energy in the first place, and also seeks to mitigate social controversies and conflicts over nuclear power plants and related facilities. The plan, moreover, strives to minimize the use of natural resources, and by consequence, the impact of energy use on the natural environment. The OLNPPP has helped citizens to recognize the vital role they play in the energy policy, since they can see how their actions—like adjusting their energy consumption on a daily basis—can have far-reaching impact. This cultural shift afoot in Seoul has led to an increasing consensus on the need for a more sustainable energy policy, and will likely enable the city government to implement more eco-friendly policies in the future.

 11. Did the initiative improve integrity and/or accountability in public service? (If applicable)
1. Sustainable and effective energy policy system The OLNPPP’s programs are sustainable due to the continuous institutional, legal, and structural support they receive. Programs with structural implications, such as the creation of new and renewable energy facilities and the retrofitting of buildings, expand the city’s foundation for energy efficiency and help make Seoul an energy-friendly city in the long run. Seoul also works with various local organizations and provides diverse incentives for citizens to cut down their energy consumption on a daily basis, thus establishing a virtuous cycle of energy awareness and efficiency. Reasonable rents on public land and facilities for the building of new and renewable energy facilities, BRP loans, and the other diverse programs of the OLNPPP are based on rational and sustainable policies geared toward realizing energy efficiency and sustainability. The rents charged on public land and facilities today are determined not according to the location or size of the land or facilities, but according to the capacity of energy generation the facilities achieve. BRP loans, now with an interest rate of 1.75 percent per annum, are provided on the basis of the energy-saving effects of the architectural plans submitted. As Seoul continues to update and improve its policy measures in line with changes in society at large, the OLNPPP will continue to evolve and produce successful outcomes. 2. An energy-efficient system easily replicable by other cities The programs making up the OLNPPP work to different extents depending on local and geographic conditions, but in general most can be implemented in other cities as well. The national average number of hours of sunlight received on horizontal surfaces in Korea is 3.65 hours, slightly higher than Seoul’s 3.2 hours. Other Korean cities therefore might benefit even more from the kind of solar energy facilities that Seoul has installed. Other metropolitan centers, such as Incheon, Busan, and Gunsan, also have stronger wind velocities (i.e., 2.9, 3.7, and 3.8 meters per second, respectively) than Seoul. Mountainous areas, such as Daegwallyeong (with wind velocity of 4.3 meters per second on average), will have even greater success with the kind of programs that Seoul has adopted. Needless to say, there is nothing to prevent the public awareness campaigns and volunteering programs that Seoul has launched from having similar or even greater successes in other Korean cities. It should also be noted that Seoul has relied significantly on private sector capital to create and install new energy facilities. By streamlining regulatory and policy measures that obstruct the private sector’s investment in new and renewable energy facilities, other cities can induce similar levels of private-sector participation in their energy initiatives as well. Some localization of these programs, however, might be necessary to ensure participation by energy service companies and others. As most of Seoul’s energy-saving programs depend on civic participation and by and large do not require any additional budgets, other cities can easily adopt and adjust such programs with little funding. 3. Research on the OLNPPP and OLNPPP benchmarking The OLNPPP is significant in that it is evidence of how a local government, facing many restrictions to its legislative and fiscal powers, can achieve success with its energy policy initiatives. The Eco-Mileage Program, in particular, has been praised for saving energy and reducing greenhouse gas emissions at once, and has already been benchmarked by Busan as well as by the provinces of Gyeonggi-do and Jeolla-do. Metropolis, an international organization, analyzed the OLNPPP as part of its case studies, publishing its findings on its website (

 12. Were special measures put in place to ensure that the initiative benefits women and girls and improves the situation of the poorest and most vulnerable? (If applicable)
1. Central importance of civic participation and awareness The OLNPPP reinforced the crucial importance of civic participation and awareness for the success of any government policy or plan. Enlisting citizens’ participation at all stages from the drafting of the plan onward helped to minimize failures and errors and eased public resistance. Civic participation, moreover, allowed for the opening up of new topics and issues for wider social discourse. As Korea has until very recently exclusively relied on thermal and nuclear power plants for energy according to a supplier-centered policy, most debates on energy issues have focused on how to deal with the byproducts and aftermath of the policy, such as the depletion of fossil fuels and the handling of nuclear wastes. As the OLNPPP began to produce visible outcomes, however, people came to develop greater confidence in new and renewable energy sources and became more open to innovative energy policies and projects, in a virtuous cycle of policy governance and social discourse. The OLNPPP also led to significant improvements in regulatory and policy measures and induced greater self-reflection among citizens on their energy consumption habits and why changes were needed for energy sustainability. While no major social conflict arose from the policy recommendation of keeping indoor temperatures at 26°C in the warm seasons and at 20°C in the cold seasons, citizens now understand on a deeper level how doing so can prevent sudden power outages. Having learned how daily and personal practices can help to prevent major social crises, Seoul citizens have cultivated a more open attitude to new policies and institutional frameworks. 2. Catalyzing technological development and fostering new industries The OLNPPP has also served as a catalyst for the development and improvement of new energy technologies. The reinforced Green Building Design Criteria, effective in 2013, has significantly enhanced the energy efficiency of large buildings by raising the quota on mandatory use of new and renewable energy from 6 percent in 2012 to 12 percent in 2014. This policy, in turn, has led to the creation and emergence of new innovations, including those for reducing overall heat transmission, for improving insulation effects, and for strengthening the airtight functions of doors and window frames. 3. Maintaining public consensus and ensuring effective governance The most successful and sustainable OLNPPP programs thus far have been energy-saving initiatives that enlist the daily participation of citizens. Examples include the Eco-Mileage Program and the Good-Natured Stores for Energy-Saving, as well as the Green Leaders Energy Consultants volunteers who travel the city to disseminate information about energy issues to the public. As OLNPPP citizens themselves participated in all phases of the plan from design to drafting to implementation, civic volunteerism in the program is strong. The Executive Committee for One Less Nuclear Power Plant for its part has been key to the plan, conducting in-depth discussions on various issues of OLNPPP programs and sustaining an effective governance over the policy citywide. Citizen participation in future energy programs under the OLNPPP will continue to be integral to the plan’s long-term success OLNPPP.

Contact Information

Institution Name:   Environmental Policy Division,Seoul Metropolitan Government
Institution Type:   Government Department  
Contact Person:   Jeong hyeon Noh
Title:   Manager  
Telephone/ Fax:   82-2-2133-3524
Institution's / Project's Website:  
Address:   110 Sejongdaero, Jung-gu
Postal Code:   100744
City:   Seoul

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