The Green Industry is a bucket filled to the brim with the new renewable energy developers who dove into it. In spite of the global market's economic recession, the study suggested that the new renewable energy field has the potential to be the next growth engine in the market. On December 3, 2008, KOTRA analyzed the report America/Europe Renewable Energy Industry Movement and Penetration Status and stated that the usage rate of America and EU's renewable energy reaches only 7%, but shows high potential to grow in the near future.
President-elect Obama of the United States and EU government officials' recent announcements on the expansion of US infrastructure to new renewable energy also gives a good sign of the bright future in the Green Industry. Indeed, industries relating to solar energy, wind power, and fuel cell energy are rapidly growing. America's annual growth rate of solar energy increased from 33% in 2006 to 57% in 2007.
President-elect Obama promised to invest 150 billion dollars into renewable energy for the next 10 years, while the European wind power generation market is calculated at 8,544 MW, 10.8 billion euros. The European Union aimed to increase the usage of renewable energy by 20% before 2011.
Korea jumped into the Green Industry competition and started to work on new renewable products in a similar amount of time. Here, everyone is closer to the starting line than the finish line of the marathon. DC Chemical is developing solar energy with their polysilicon, POSCO Power is in technical cooperation with a USbased fuel cell company to one day build a power plant independently, and ECO Energy Holdings is trying to produce biogas from landfill and sewage. Wind power industry and hybrid industry is put on a start to be developed further as well.
On top of a landfill environment and dense population that adds beneficial factors to the biogas production business, Korea has two other factors that can serve the country to be the leading new renewable energy country.
Korea has well developed heavy and chemical industries and is in possession of the POSCO factory that can produce huge steel sheets. Korea also has companies like Samsung Electronics and Hyundai Motor that can produce heavy electric machines. If these are combined into a package system of new renewable energy, they can reach the global market. Also Korea has become experienced in industry plant projects in middle eastern countries and is strong in welding and machining. These can work as great manpower if applied well.
Korea started new renewable projects at the right time in the right place. The question is how to collaborate in partnership with other countries who have developed or are developing to overcome the challenges to enter the foreign market. A well written strategy and long-term partnership needs to be established along with governmental policy back-ups.
The primary goal of new renewable energy development is the establishment of infrastructure and development of technology. In spite of the efficiency of each energy source, they are looking to wait at least 5-10 years to overcome the learning curve and have power plants at an affordable cost. But the future is bright, just like CEO Song Hyo-soon of ECO Energy Holdings asserted during the interview: "We have every element that a country requires to be a new renewable strong country." So why should we worry rather than collaborate