A Session on Environmental Policies

Environment Minister Lee briefs foreign diplomats on Seoul? strategies for low-carbon, green growth












Minister Lee Maanee of the Ministry of Environment outlined to foreign diplomats and environmental experts Seoul's environmental policies on March 18 at Seoul Plaza Hotel in downtown Seoul, the ministry said.
The sixth annual event since 2004 was designed to introduce to foreign diplomats the government's major environmental policies for this year to boost Korea's image as a leading environmental country and to strengthen its ties with foreign countries on environmental cooperation, the ministry said.
In his opening speech, Minister Lee said this year would be the year for producing results with the official environmental policies under the "low-carbon, green growth" paradigm, 2010 being the third year in which the government is executing the environmental policies announced in 2008.
Lee said the government has been pushing the Four Rivers Restoration Project and other green policies to realize a low-carbon society. The Environment Ministry, he said, will make their environmental policies among the most advanced in the world to the extent that they will help overcome various problems from global warming and the economic crisis.
A key segment of the session was the direction of the government's green policies in 2010, which includes policies to cope with climate change, rational measures to secure and use botanical resources, the creation of green towns and means to promote them, the development of new green technologies and how to vitalize the use of those technologies and ways for further exchanges of technologies and cooperation, among others.
The session this year is likely to spur exchange and cooperation on environmental problems with the international society, as a number of key international meetings are to be held in Korea this year, most notably the G-20 Summit on Nov. 13-14 in Seoul and the B4H meeting in Seoul, along with UNEP recognizing Seoul's green growth polices as a model for the world, bringing global attention to Korea.
The ministry expected that the event would lead to real cooperation with foreign countries in such areas as the construction of potable water and drainage pipelines, among others, as the ministry plans to keep foreign countries informed of its environmental policies annually to lead the search for solutions to the problems of climate change and other international environmental issues.
The Ministry of Environment has facilitated the construction of infrastructure to establish a sustainable green country based on the spirit of respect for life. At the same time, the ministry has continued to make efforts toward the creation of a healthy and sound environment, the enhancement of international cooperation, and the encouragement of citizens' participation in environmental issues.
The Ministry of Environment will not spare any effort to meet people's expectations and desire for a new government and objectively assess the performances and limitations of environmental policies of the past and establish a new framework for environmental policies based on that assessment.
The ministry will focus on responding to environmental threats and environmental diseases in order to realize a sustainable and green country, and on the enhancement of environmental diplomacy to actively participate in international cooperation to address global environmental problems. In addition, the ministry will foster environmental technology and industry to enhance national competitiveness, facilitate recycling to promote balanced development and create a clean and pleasant environment where nature and humans coexist to improve the quality of life.
The Korea National Park Service (Chairman Hong-woo Eum) announced that it would take charge of the operation of the Man and the Biosphere (MAB) National Committee.
As an affiliated committee to the Korean National Commission for UNESCO, UNESCO MAB National Committee of ROK was established to domestically perform UNESCO? intergovernmental environment program, MAB, in June 1980. nw

Minister Lee Maanee of the Ministry of Environment gives his speech at the 6th Briefing on the Environment Policies of Korea to foreign diplomats on Feb. 18 at Seoul Plaza Hotel in Seoul.

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