It was shown that the output of new and renewable energy in 2019 increased by 5.4% compared to the previous year. The amount of new and renewable energy generated mostly through solar generation stations that had experienced drastic increase in their power generation capacities also increased by about 9%. However, the fact that waste energy still takes up almost half of new and renewable energy is seen as an issue.
According to “preliminary stats on supply of new and renewable energy in 2019” announced recently by Korea Energy Agency, the output of new and renewable energy in 2019 was 18.796 million TOE (Ton of oil equivalent) which is a 5.37% jump from 2018.
The percentage of supply of new and renewable energy out of primary energy was 6.19% which is a 0.39% increase compared to 2018 when the percentage was 5.80%. This is the first time when statistics on supply of new and renewable energy was made public in detail.
Energy output indicates amount of supplied energy that includes power on top of thermal and transportation energy. Unlike “amount of generation”, which indicates amount of power generated from power production plants, thermal and transportation energy are also included in power supply. Thus, energy output shows an overall energy supply in South Korea.
Out of the output of new and renewable energy n 2019, the percentage of waste energy was 48.7% which is almost half of the output. Although the percentage dropped by 2% from 2018 when the percentage of waste energy was 48.7%, the output increased by 0.7% (61,845 TOE).
Waste energy utilizes combustible waste such as refuse-derived fuel (RDF) and waste oil and refined oil that occurs from industrial sites and homes. As a result, it is difficult to see it as clean energy.
Although the amount of new and renewable energy generated in 2019 increased mainly through solar photovoltaic energy, waste energy also had a lot to do with it.
The amount of energy generated in 2019 was 57,457 GWh which is an 8.99% increase from 2018. The amount made up 9.77%, which is an 0.89% increase from 2018 (8.88%), of the total amount of energy generated in South Korea. As new generating units were being built with solar generation units at the center, the amount of new and renewable energy generated also increased as a result. The amount of solar photovoltaic energy generated in 2019 was 13,108,645 MWh and it jumped 42.4% (3,900,546 MWh) from the amount in 2018 when it was 9,208,099 MWh.
However, the amount of waste energy generated was still responsible for almost the half of the amount of new and renewable energy generated. Percentages of the amounts of waste energy, solar photovoltaic energy, and bioenergy in 2019 out of the total amount were 42.9%, 22.8%, and 18.1% respectively followed by hydropower (4.9%), wind energy (4.7%), fuel cell (4.0%), integrated gasification combined cycle (1.8%), and marine energy (0.8%).
Because the amount of new and renewable energy generated excluding waste energy is still at an insignificant level, being less dependent on waste energy is seen as a national energy. According to the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy (MOTIE), the percentages of generation quantity per coal, nuclear power, and liquefied natural gas were 40%, 26%, and 26% respectively followed by new and renewable energy excluding waste energy (5%) and others (3%).
The MOTIE and Korea Energy Agency are planning to exclude waste energy starting from final values of the 2019’s statistics on new and renewable energy that will be made public in November or this year’s statistics.
“Waste energy was excluded from the list of renewable energy in October last year.” said a spokesperson for the MOTIE. “We are going to decide on when we are going to remove waste energy from annual statistics when we decide on the final statistics.”
Staff Reporter Byun, Sanggeun | email@example.com