Korean Biomass Plaintiffs v. South Korea
Jurisdiction: Constitutional Court
Principle law(s): Act on the Promotion of the Development, Use and Diffusion of New and Renewable Energy
Side A: Korean Biomass Plaintiffs (Corporation)
Side B: South Korea (Government)
Core objectives: Whether South Korea's subsidies to biomass generation violate the constitutional environmental rights of solar owners and nearby residents
SummaryOn September 28, 2020, more than 60 solar power plant owners and residents near biomass plants sued the South Korean government in the South Korean Constitutional Court, challenging biomass subsidies on climate and pollution grounds. The plaintiffs allege that the South Korean New and Renewable Energy Promotion Act and regulations treat biomass generation as renewable and low or zero carbon, thus making it eligible for significant subsidies. According to the plaintiffs, however, biomass generation leads to forest devastation, higher CO2 emissions than coal, and local air pollution. As a result, South Korea's biomass policy violates South Korean constitutional environmental rights.
Related laws and policies
The Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy is to promote the diversification of energy sources through the promotion of technological development, use and distribution of new energy and renewable energy, and the activation of the new energy industry and the renewable energy industry. The Act allo...