The Korea Herald


Korea seeks new technology to fight fine dust

By Lim Jeong-yeo

Published : June 16, 2016 - 13:03

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South Korea will soon craft a concrete plan for the development of technology to tackle fine dust particles that have emerged as a major health threat, according to a related ministry on Thursday.

The Ministry of Science, ICT and Future Planning said it will mobilize "all national R&D capability" on resolving the problem in a "fundamental and innovative" manner.

In the first step, the government plans to map out a concrete action plan by September to develop technology that will curb fine dust.

A draft scheme will be released by the end of July for the collection of opinions from the public, business community and environmental groups, the ministry said.

An inter-agency task force, also involving civilian experts and industry figures, is scheduled to hold its inaugural meeting on Friday, it added.

In recent years, South Korea's sky has often turned grey due to fine dust, which is very harmful to the public’s health. 
(Yonhap) (Yonhap)
Authorities and experts here say some particles seem to originate from China and others are apparently emitted by vehicles and coal-fired power plants at home. There could be various other factors as well but no exact data are available yet.

"Studies on fine dust so far have been conducted on a partial basis, especially on ways to reduce damage," the ministry said.

"This time, however, the government plans to take a comprehensive approach toward all relevant issues to resolve (the issue) with science and technology."

Earlier this month, Prime Minister Hwang Kyo-ahn presided over a special meeting of ministers to discuss measures against fine dust.

In the session, the government decided to consider toughening restrictions on old diesel vehicles and shutting down aging coal-fired power plants. (Yonhap)