Bridge to Death: Air Quality And Health Impacts of Fossil Gas Power

Gas power’s role as a bridge in energy transition is widely accepted in South Korea, and the country’s 9th Basic Plan for Long-term Electricity Supply and Demand, finalized in December 2020, targets the installed capacity of gas-fired power generation to reach 59.1 gigawatts (GW) by 2034. In particular, 24 (12.7GW) out of the 30 coal fired power units scheduled for decommissioning by 2034 are planned to be converted into gas power plants.

In this report, Solutions for Our Climate (SFOC) analyzed the air pollution from gas plants and the associated health impacts under the current policy and explored the health benefits from an accelerated phase out of gas power by 2035.

Under the Current Policy scenario, gas power generation is estimated to cause up to 859 premature deaths per year and 23,200 premature deaths until 2064. On the contrary, premature deaths under a “Net-Zero scenario” would accumulate to a significantly lower number of 5,360 until 2035. In other words, 17,840 premature deaths can be avoided by withdrawing the plans to construct the plants in pipeline and phasing out all gas plants by 2035.

Read the full report in English below. Also, the report can be found here on the SFOC website in Korean.

Seukyoung Lee, Gyuri Cho, Gahee Han, Lauri Myllyvirta

Partners: Solutions for Our Climate (SFOC)

South Korea