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South Korea in major push to promote clean burn vehicles

POSTED BY Nigel Andretti ON 06 June 2016

SOUTH Korea has launched a major push to promote clean burning vehicles that use alternative fuels such as hydrogen and electric motors.

The Government said in Seoul this week it will crack down on old diesels, promote alternative fuels and set a target for 30 percent domestic EV sales by 2020.

The Yonhap news agency said restrictions on old diesel vehicles will be toughened while it promotes awareness of more environment-friendly cars to address public health concerns over fine particulate matter.

According to Yonhap, a gathering of senior policymakers chaired by Prime Minister Hwang Kyo-ahn decided to take action to make electric vehicles (EVs) account for 30 percent of all automobile sales by 2020.

The government will also limit access into the Seoul metropolitan area for older, higher-emitting diesels and also shut down coal-powered electric power generation plants that have been in operation for more than 40 years to improve air quality.

Other reported regulatory measures will include restricting the operations of diesel cars depending on air conditions. All diesel buses will be replaced with compressed natural gas (CNG) vehicles.

In France, the country’s president Park Geun-hye (below) said this week Seoul and Paris could stay ahead in the hydrogen fuel-cell vehicle market if Air Liquide S.A., the world’s largest supplier of industrial gases, and South Korea’s Hyundai Motor Co. join forces.

The State Visit Of The President Of The Republic of Korea

Hyundai already has a hydrogen fuel cell vehicle version of its Tuscon SUV on the market; Air Liquide has hydrogen liquefaction technology.

Hyundai has signed a cooperation deal with Air Liquide. As part of her trip, President Park visited an Air Liquide research centre in Grenoble.

Paris-based electric taxi startup STEP currently has five fuel cell taxis on the road in a pilot programme.