With only 180 megawatts (MW) of wind energy installed and a government target of 2,250 MW of wind energy by 2012, South Korea represents a large potential market. Since 2002, the South Korean government has introduced a feed-in tariff scheme which has largely benefited the photovoltaic market so far. South Korea has very little natural resource and relies on large imports of fossil fuels with a portion of nuclear energy.
At the invitation of the Korean Trade/Investment Promotion Agency (KOTRA), Hydro Tasmania Consulting represented the Clean Energy Council and exhibited in the Australian pavilion at the SWEET (Solar, Wind and Earth Energy Trade Fair) in South Korea.
The SWEET trade fair was a great opportunity for the Clean Energy Council to promote the capabilities of its members as well as the exciting Australian market in terms of renewable energy. Some Korean companies will certainly come to the next Clean Energy Council Conference & Exhibition in November 2008.
Overall, the fair was dominated by the photovoltaic market with large exhibitions from solar panel suppliers. Wind energy was represented to a lesser degree, as the domestic market appears to be difficult in terms of permitting. Strong opposition from environmental groups prevents many wind projects proceeding.Article continues below…
Despite this, some large Korean industrial groups are moving towards wind turbine manufacturing. UNISON is one of them with a 750 kilowatt turbine already up and running and a factory ready to produce 130 units per year. UNISON is also developing a 2 MW model for 2009. The company is operating the two main existing wind farms in South Korea representing a total of 140 MW.