Opening Ceremony of Seoul International Energy Conference
Date November 12th, 2014 | Venue Multi-purpose Hall, Seoul City Hall
It is a great pleasure to be here today. I am the mayor of Seoul, Park Wonsoon. Chairman Walt Patterson and other members of Seoul International Energy Advisory Council, Co-chairman Lee Seung-hoon of Green Growth Committee, who will deliver the keynote speech, and distinguished citizens, who attend with great concerns about energy. This conference was created to share new information on energy policies of major cities and to seek opportunities to open the door to a better future with great scholars from all over the world.
Human beings are facing some of the most serious and threatening challenges in history. Climate change and energy crises caused by the depletion of fossil fuels are resulting in crises that challenge our dream of a sustainable future. Still, I think crisis is another name for opportunity. When a crisis comes, we should recognize it and turn it into an opportunity. That is why the Seoul Metropolitan Government is actively and strongly implementing the One Less Nuclear Plant policy.
The energy policy is aimed at a reduction in energy consumption of two million TOE, equivalent to the energy produced by one nuclear power plant, by saving energy and using new renewable sources of energy. When we first started this project in 2012, there was much skepticism about its success.
The government’s efforts, however, along with citizens’ active participation helped Seoul reach its goal in June 2014, six months earlier than originally planned. Seoul proved that citizens are energy and their participation is energy management. As a result, Seoul was given the honor of the UN public service award, the WGBC (World Green Building Council) climate change leadership award, and the WWF and C4000-Siemens city climate leadership awards in photovoltaic energy.
Still, not satisfied with these achievements, Seoul is implementing the second One Less Nuclear Plant project. If we succeed in this project, the power independence rate will increase by up to 20%, four million TOE of energy will be saved, and greenhouse gas emissions will be reduced by 10 million tons. It will push the city towards an even healthier, safer, and more sustainable future.
The topic we will be discussing today is “Energy Efficiency – The Key to a Successful City Energy Policy.” City energy policies must be focused on providing better energy services to citizens with less energy consumption.
Today, Chairman Lee Seung-hoon of the Green Growth Committee will deliver the keynote speech on the importance of Korean municipal energy policy, Professor YU Cong of the National Development and Reform Commission and Chairman Thomas K. Dreessen of EPS Capital Corp will speak on energy efficiency policies in China, and finally, Gerhard Stryihipp, Head of Fraunhofer Institute in Germany and Manfred Fischedick, an energy policy advisor for EU will speak on energy service efficiency and recent trends in Europe. In addition, the sessions will provide opportunities to share best practices in different countries and enlighten each other on the topics of Energy Efficiency & Industrial Promotion and Global Case Studies of Energy Services and Efficiency.
The Seoul Metropolitan Government will keep on striving to transform Seoul into a city where energy welfare for citizens is the first priority by thoroughly reviewing all the presentations and recommendations discussed today and applying them to its policies.
I would like to extend my sincere respect and gratitude to the distinguished guests, citizens, and speakers. We will make even more efforts to take this opportunity to enhance Seoul’s One Less Nuclear Power Plant policy so that energy independence, participation, and sharing can become important values in our society. I hope Seoul’s first step towards sustainable growth and a better world will inspire many major cities in the world to follow suit. Thank you very much.