District heating and cooling (DHC) is firmly ingrained in the fabric of Korea’s energy policies, though the extent to which combined heat and power (CHP) within industrial and commercial applications can contribute to Korea’s “green growth” strategy is still unclear. The government supports CHP through its planning policy and tax incentives, and some further measures are under development.
However, since the last IEA CHP/DHC Country Scorecard, progress has been relatively slow – CHP capacity as a share of total national electricity generation capacity has remained stagnant, and some hurdles still exist. The country has also faced a series of rolling electricity load-shedding incidents and there is greater caution about the use of nuclear power owing to the Fukushima accident in Japan, spurring interest in both large-scale fuel cell applications and residential fuel cell micro-CHP.
The scope and intent of this report is to summarise the current status of CHP and DHC applications in Korea, to review the impact that government policies have had on CHP and DHC uptake, and to offer possible solutions to the identified barriers currently being faced by the industry.