South Korea’s nuclear phase-out to boost gas demand

By Andrew Walker 26 June 2017
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The control room at South Korea’s Shin-Wolsong nuclear power plant. (KHNP) The control room at South Korea’s Shin-Wolsong nuclear power plant. (KHNP)

South Korea’s plans to phase out nuclear power from the country’s energy mix will lead to greater demand for gas over the long term, experts have told Interfax Natural Gas Daily.

President Moon Jae-in announced plans for the phase-out on 19 June. Keun Wook Paik, senior research fellow at the Oxford Institute for Energy Studies, told Interfax Natural Gas Daily that this would mean not only that none of the reactors planned by South Korea’s previous administration will be built, but also that none of the country’s current fleet of reactors will be able to extend their operating licences.

The previous administration planned to build six new reactors with a combined capacity of 8.8 GW and bring them online by 2030. This would have replaced 5.6 GW of nuclear capacity set to be decommissioned over this period.

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