Category Archives: Today in Korea

“Korea's solution to the Middle East crisis: Go for zero” Korea Times

Korea Times

“Korea’s solution to the Middle East crisis: Go for zero”

January 18, 2019

Emanuel Pastreich

The request from the Trump administration that South Korea join a new naval mission to the Strait of Hormuz, at precisely the moment the entire region is on fire, places Seoul in a difficult position. Not only is the push for military conflict with Iran, which is making Secretary of State Mike Pompeo immensely unpopular with many Americans (including many in the military), the plan has also been met with profound skepticism on the part of many American allies. Many question the legitimacy, and the logic, of assassinating Iranian General Qasem Soleimani. Few think that there will be any positive result from military action.

The risk of South Korea being drawn into a massive, and crippling, military conflict, and one in which the United States does not have overwhelming advantage as was the case in the first Gulf War, are high. The threat that Iran will break off diplomatic relations with Seoul, and perhaps even encourage attacks on Koreans around the world, is real.

At the same time, South Korea has benefitted immensely from the U.S.-Korea alliance and the ties between the two countries in culture, education, politics and economics are profound. A decision by South Korea to avoid the Hormuz mission, as Foreign Minister Kang Kyung-wha has suggested, could do significant damage to bilateral relations and create resentment the extends far beyond the Trump administration.

The choice is incredibly difficult, but it must be made.

I will not pretend to offer a miracle cure. What I would like to suggest here is that this crisis offers South Korea a chance for a profound consideration of its true national security and an opportunity to launch a complete transformation of its economy and culture that will make future choices more strategically sound and will keep South Korea out of such impossible positions.

Energy resources from the Middle East are critical to the Korean Economy at multiple levels. Korea uses those energy sources in its economy, it produces products that require those energy sources such as automobiles and ships that are sold globally (and is therefore sensitive to fluctuations in the price of oil), and Korea sells many products and services to the Middle East so that the economic health of that part of the world has a direct impact at home.

So dangerous it the instability in the Middle East that Koreans must respond by focusing their full attention on the solution (putting away their smartphones) and they must make energy security the national priority.

However, this crisis, which I think is the equivalent of war, does not mean that Korea must buy even more weapons systems, or send its military into the Middle East to face tremendous dangers in an ambiguous struggle. Instead, making Korea completely independent of imported fossil fuels must become the priority. We must create the equivalent of a military economy to get us there quickly. We have no time to waste.

The rapid end of dependency on petroleum and other energy sources imported from abroad must be made such a fundamental security priority that the response of the stock market, short-term profits for business, the convenience of citizens and traditional economic growth metrics become secondary in the discussion.

The government must reassert its authority to set a national long-term agenda and to mobilize citizens, working together with all sectors, so that we can rapidly transform our economy, our means of production and our culture. It is an imperative, “the moral equivalent of war,” to quote President Jimmy Carter, that we become entirely independent of fossil fuels in the next few years.

Once we recognize that the overwhelming priority for Korea is national security, and not economic growth, and that national security will only come when we end the importation of petroleum from the Middle East, and from elsewhere, we will make real progress. Climate change engendered by emissions from fossil fuels will destroy Korea over the next 40 years (and the predictions about global warming of scientists over the last 30 years have been quite accurate) and constant dependency on imported energy means that Korea can be economically destroyed at any time by a break in the flow of petroleum and coal into the country.

The first step is for the government to ignore the cries of short-sighted business representatives who have no long-term strategy for the nation and who are more interested in overseas profits than in the well-being of Koreans.

We must set an ambitious plan to make Korea 100 percent carbon-free in four years, or fewer. Such a plan will go even beyond the most ambitious efforts elsewhere in the world and make Korea number one. Moreover, it must be even more comprehensive an effort than the Korean drive for rapid growth in the 1960s and 1970s. To be successful, this goal of independence from fossil fuels must become a critical part of the lives of all citizens, giving new meaning to every action and creating a new sense of community. Citizens should be placed at the center of this national movement to end imports of energy, thus encouraging a sense of common purpose and a habit of mutual support, as opposed to narcissistic self-indulgence and greedy competition.

We must make plans for South Korea in which energy independence is set as the top priority and in which policies are no longer evaluated with regards to the profits they may derive for wealthy investors.

First, the government must reinvent finance to serve in much the manner it does in a war-time economy. As was true in the 1960s and 1970s, finance must be nationalized and used for the common good. Foreign capital which is not directed at the long-term interests of Korea, specifically energy independence, must be rejected.

The goal of zero imported fuel is necessary for survival. Profit and consumption are far lesser concerns.

The entire economy must be mobilized to manufacture and distribute wind-powered and solar powered sources of energy. Those sources of energy should be heavily subsidized for the purpose of national security and must completely displace oil and coal power. The technology should be open source and all residents should be required by law to employ renewable energy. We must see solar and wind power devices attached to every residence, every office building and spread across the country. Every plane or bus or automobile must be covered with solar panels that generate energy.

But the process goes further than that. Buildings that waste energy must be entirely rebuilt for maximum efficiency, including the installation of insulation and the use of double or triple storm windows. We should not hesitate to demolish buildings that cannot be energy efficient. Moreover, we must increase the number of trees in public spaces, even tearing down many buildings in cities to make space for plants.

Employing electric cars that can be charged using solar panels will be a critical first step. But we can only do so effectively if we require that all existing automobiles be turned in for replacement with electric vehicles within six months.

But many people should simply give up their cars forever. Moreover, South Korea should move beyond its economic dependence on the automotive sector. The ultimate plan will be to eliminate most automobiles and to redesign cities so the vehicles are no longer needed.

The scale of the transformation will be massive and must be pushed forward by a social movement that includes all citizens. Citizens must learn at local meetings, much as they did in the 1960s and 1970s, about the dangers of climate change, about the imperative to stop the use of gasoline, of plastics, and of everything related to imported petroleum. We must educate everyone about the existential danger for Korea posed by climate change and the national security risks of dependence on imported energy. We must make everyone aware of how each of their daily actions, driving a car, buying a plastic toy, eating food wrapped in plastic and imported, make Korea less secure and increase the dangers that we face.

This movement should include everyone, from every block, from every village, across Korea.

To achieve such a goal we must make reading, writing, analysis and debate central to Korean society. The link between climate change and fossil fuels, and the deep threat to Korean security posed by importing energy, can only be made clear if we revive intellectual discourse in our society and make citizens participants in the process. We must encourage Koreans to be citizens and to engage their minds in policy, not just in mindless entertainment.

But there is more. To eliminate imported energy, and thereby assure national security, we must return to our traditional values. Koreans once held frugality, modesty, self-sufficiency and humility as the highest values. It was once considered shameful to throw away a grain of rice, or to dispose of any object that had still value. Koreans wasted nothing. Thrift was a great virtue.

But Korea has been taken over by an indulgent culture of consumption that makes waste a virtue. We are encouraged by television shows, commercials and the alien concept of consumption-based economics to waste. In fact, the more we waste, the better our economy will be ― or so we are told. We have thrown away close family ties and deep friendships. Instead, we pass our days buried in our smartphones, watching stupid videos, photographs of food, video games or pornography. This flawed culture encourages a fabulous waste of energy that makes the southern side of the Korean Peninsula visible from space. It is a catastrophe, not an achievement that South Korea is lit up, and this waste deeply compromises our security. All that energy is imported, and all that energy is destroying the climate.

As we push for true energy independence, we also will be forced to reconsider the concept of trade. Trade has been presented to us as a critical aspect of the economy, and this position on the importance of trade is shared by representatives of the left and of the right.

Trade is a sacred topic, one that no one can question.

But if Korea wants true security, we must ask the hard questions. The United States, and Japan and China have already started to ask those hard questions about trade.

The ships that bring us products from around the world also consume immense amounts of imported fossil fuels and they contribute to climate change. Moreover, Korea’s dependency on raw materials and finished goods that are imported vastly increases the risks for Korea in the case of a conflict. Whereas most tools and furniture were once made in Korea, now most must be brought from abroad. Jobs have been sacrificed, the nation’s security has been compromised and local expertise diminished. If trade stops in a crisis, the Korean economy will stop.

Increased self-sufficiency is critical to Korea’s survival; the myth that the only road to prosperity is through trade must be questioned. If trade makes us insecure, we must limit trade. We are in a position where most Koreans would starve in a few weeks if food imports ceased.

The Middle East crisis is as serious as it looks. But the ultimate message for us is NOT that we need to send warships and tanks into that growing chaos. No. Rather, we must come together in Korea, to exercise great political will, and to make Korea truly independent of imported energy. That is the first step toward true security.

The struggle to change direction will be enormous. Everyone must be involved. But as we know, Korea has succeeded against the odds before.

“Fractured governance fractures the Hanoi summit” The Korea Times

The Korea Times

“Fractured governance fractures the Hanoi summit”

March 1, 2019

Emanuel Pastreich

The sudden cancellation of the joint statement on February 28 at the end of the Trump-Kim Summit in Hanoi, Vietnam, was one of the most complex and contradictory historical events in my memory. Of course, the ad-lib briefing by Donald Trump and Mike Pompeo immediately after was not complex at all. It was a banal show for the media that avoided talking about much of anything other than process.

Trump spoke about his “strong relationship” with Kim Jong-un, Shinzo Abe, Xi Jinping and Moon Jae-in, sounding like a late-night comedian who is trying to make up content to plug up a sudden hole in the program.

But the positive phrases that Trump threw out could not distract everyone from the growing catastrophe around the world. His sweet words about his “productive time” with Chairman Kim did not serve as a fig leaf to cover up the increasing risk of war on every side.

Let’s be honest. North Korea is not an overwhelming threat to world peace but rather an island of relative stability in the dust being stirred up as the global order that was established in 1945 at the San Francisco conference comes crashing down. The fact that North Korea is a closed and repressive state puts it in good company.

But the United States, now stripped of all expertise in government, the analysis of issues and policy having been radically privatized, and the culture warped by an extreme concentration of wealth, is slipping into a combination of isolationism and militarism that makes just about anything possible. 

That structural transformation, more the opposition in Congress to the reduction of sanctions back home, or the tawdry testimony of Trump’s personal lawyer Michael Cohen, was the reason that the Hanoi show did not produce anything. 

But the world is not standing still for Trump. India and Pakistan, two nuclear powers, stand on the edge of war, in no small part due to the crude political games played by the United States in an attempt to limit Chinese influence. The United States military continues to interfere throughout Central Asia, the Middle East and Africa with impunity and the new Congress seems to be powerless to rein it in. 

South America has been thrown into chaos by the imposition of the far-right government in Brazil of Jair Bolsonaro that threatens not only to make force the favored means of resolving political issues but which embraces the reckless anti-intellectual drive for profit and plans to destroy the Amazon forest, thereby hastening human extinction. 

At the same time, the Neo-Con twins Elliot Abrams and John Bolton are working overtime to push for regime change in Venezuela. They want to take down the government of Nicholas Maduro and seize control of the oil for multinational corporations. In a grotesque move, the right-wing senator Marco Rubio posted photographs on his Twitter account of the Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi, suggesting that Maduro would be tortured and murdered in a similar manner for resisting the United States. 

Much of the drive to seize resources is being driven by the oil and coal barons the Koch brothers, Charles and Andy. They are a big force in the scramble to get their paws on the coal, gold and other resources in North Korea that would be best left alone beneath the surface. 

That is to say that the summit with Kim Jong-un cannot be understood if one does not know that the economic miracle that Trump describes is actually an economic miracle for global investors, not for North Koreans. Engagement with North Korea cannot be detached from the more hostile moves taking place in Iran and Venezuela. 

But that is only half the story. The push of John Bolton to withdraw the United States to withdraw from the INF treaty (Intermediate-range Nuclear Forces (INF) treaty) has set us on the track to a major arms race which will be far more dangerous than what happened in the1950s because the technology is so much more advanced. That insanity, combined with the unilateral termination of the nuclear deal with Iran guarantees a massive arms race between Germany, Russia, China, the United States, Turkey, Japan, India, and Iran that may well end in a world war. All of those countries are likely to have nuclear weapons in the not too distant future. 

We can be sure that Kim Jong-un and his advisors are aware of the growing chaos. Behind Kim’s smiles at the banquet was pure dread. The summit succeeded because both sides were willing to embrace a profound form of self-deception. 

The kind words Trump had for Xi at the press conference does nothing to obscure the fact that the Pentagon is making concrete preparations for a war with China. This situation will not get better now that Trump and those around him have embraced sanctions as a form of trade policy and see the threat of war have as a means of squeezing value out of other countries. 

To put it more bluntly, the unleashing of the United States military under the command of psychopaths and without any civilian control could be the greatest catastrophe in human history. 

The response from Democrats in the United States, and from many conservatives in South Korea and in Japan, has been a pile of criticisms that purposely ignore how Trump ignores international law, panders to his fascist base, and embraces of militarism. 

The failure of the United States to demand that all nations adhere to the non-proliferation treaty, the betrayal of Iran and the decision of the Pentagon to develop a new generation of nuclear weapons for the cost of 1 trillion USD in blatant violation of that treaty are taboo topics. 

The rise of anti-intellectualism and the decay of the media

The politics behind the Trump-Kim summit was not simple; the geopolitical shifts taking place today are profound. As the governments of nation states are compromised and taken over by private interests, politicians increasingly are forced to do the bidding of the super-rich. The roadmap for understanding our world changes from day to day. 

Yet the media sees its role as presenting the world in a manner that pleases multinational corporations and investment banks. Media has become, after all, just a business, a form of public relations. There is no intellectual inquiry into the actual state of the world. Moral issues are irrelevant in decisions about news content. Most reports serve to confuse and mislead.

The only content offered in the reports about the summit were details about how the train taken by Kim Jong-un progressed to Hanoi, how barricades set up outside the hotel and the fine points of diplomatic protocol. 

The media is dead and a deep wave of anti-intellectualism has swept the United States, and many other nations that makes critical analysis impossible. Not only is Trump incapable of conceiving of the dangers of our age, but an increasing number of citizens, addicted to online games, pornography or social media have been reduced to babbling fools incapable of understanding complex issues. 

In a sense, the critical question at the end of the summit is not: “When can another summit be held?” but rather “How can we create a culture of communication in which the discussions between institutions are related to the real issues of our age?”

Finally one should ask, what topics were that were left off the agenda for the summit in Hanoi?

Well, what are the important topics of our age? 

The rapid concentration of wealth in the hands of the few was a topic that clearly neither Trump nor Kim wants to discuss. The crisis of climate change which threatens to turn Korea into a desert, combined with the degradation of the air because of unregulated pollution and the increasing use of coal for power was also off limits. The danger of nuclear war and of the growing arms race in the region could not be mentioned (even though it is the central cause for North Korea’s insecurities) because of the tremendous profits to be made through the arms industries in the United States, Russia, Japan, China, and South Korea. Just as before the First World War, armaments and the threat of war are a major source of profits. 

The entire focus of the summit was on how North Korea would give up its nuclear weapons. A small concern in comparison with the thousands of nuclear weapons held by the United States as it threatens more and more wars and refuses even to declare no first use of nuclear weapons. 

But that problem will not be solved through another summit meeting. That problem will only be addressed if we have dialog wherein the real concerns of citizens are reflected, and discourse on real threats in international relations based on scientific analysis is central. Such a transformation will require a change of culture, not of policy or of administration.

“Korea without smartphones”

Korea Times

“Korea without smartphones”

December 2, 2018

Emanuel Pastreich

Imagine Korea withoutsmartphones.

When I make this suggestion, the response I receive from Koreans is one of intense fascination. But the assumption they make is that I am going to describe a futuristic “smart city” in which we no longer will use smart phones because information will be projected on to our eyeglasses, or our retinas, or perhaps relayed directly to our brain via an implanted chip. 

But I mean exactly what I say. The unrelenting takeover ofour brains and of our society by the smartphone is taking an ominous turn. 

Each day I watch almost every person on the subway lost in their smartphones, and increasingly lacking empathy for those around them as a result. They are mesmerized by video games; they flip quickly past photographs of chocolate cakes and cafe lattes, or fashionable dresses and shoes, or watch humorous short videos. 

Few are reading careful investigative reporting, let alone books, that address the serious issues of our time. Nor are they debating with each other about how Korea will respond to the crisis of climate change, the risk of a nuclear arms race (or nuclear war) between the United States, Russia and China. Most media reporting is being dumbed down, treated as a form of entertainment, not a duty to inform the public. 

Few people are sufficiently focused these days even to comprehend the complex geopolitical issues of the day, let alone the content of the bills pending in the National Assembly. 

We are watching a precipitous decline in political awareness and of commitment to common goals in South Korea. And I fear that the smartphone, along with the spread of a social media that encourages impulsive and unfocused responses, is playing a significant role in this tragedy. 

What do those smartphones do? We are told that smartphones make our lives more convenient and give us access to infinite amounts of information. IT experts are programming smartphones to be even more responsive to our needs and to offer even more features to make our lives more comfortable.

But Nicholas Carr’s book “The Shallows: What the internet is Doing to our Brains” presents extensive scientific evidence that the internet as a whole, and smartphones in particular, are in fact reprogramming our brains, encouraging the neurons to develop lasting patterns for firing that encourages quick responses but that make contemplation and deep thought difficult. 

Over time, we are creating a citizenship through that technology that is incapable of grasping an impending crisis and unable or unwilling to propose and implement solutions. 

If smartphones are reprogramming our brains so that we are drawn to immediate gratification, but lose our capacity for deeper contemplation, for achieving an integrated understanding of the complexity of human society, and of nature, what will become of us?

But consumption, not understanding, let alone wisdom, is the name of the game for smartphones. 

In the case of the worsening quality of the air in Korea, I observe a disturbing passivity, and also a painful failure of citizens to identify the complex factors involved. Even highly educated people seem not to have thought carefully about the exact factors behind the emissions of fine dust in Korea, and in China, and how that pollution is linked to the deregulation of industry, or to their behavior as consumers. 

That is to say those phenomena in society have been broken down into discrete elements, like postings on Facebook, and that no overarching vision of complex trends is ever formed in the mind. 

We float from one stimulating story to the next, like a butterfly flitting from one nectar-laden flower to another. We come away from our online readings with a vague sense that something is wrong, but with no deep understanding of what exactly the problem is, how it relates to our actions, and no game plan for how to solve it. 

There is a powerful argument to be made that certain technologies that can alter how we perceive the world should be limited in their use if there is reason to believe they affect the core of the democratic process. Democracy is not about voting so much as the ability to understand complex changes in society, in the economy and in politics over time. 

Without such an ability to think for ourselves, we will slip into an increasingly nightmare world, although we may never notice what happened.

“한반도 평화 및 지구평화” 2018년 11월 11일



“한반도 평화 및 지구평화”

제일차세계대전 종전 100주년을 생각 하면서 


2018 11 11

오후 7-9 PM



Common Foundation



Earth Management Institute



Commons Foundation

commons foundation

The Asia Institute

AI logo small

World Beyond War


Women Cross DMZ


The Korea Peace Movement

Korean Peace Movement-02



 임마누엘 페스트라이쉬

아시아인스티튜트 이사장

“어떻게하면 영구한 평화를 한반도에서 시작 하나?”





청바지 회원

“동북아의 평화 어디부터?”




현재 미국에서 강화되고 있는 군국주의 정책과, 트럼프의 핵무기 폐기 정책을 고려해 보았을 때, 엄청난 지정학적 도전에 마주함으로써 우리는 한반도 평화의 실현 가능한 단계에 있습니다.

이 공개토론은 지금 이 순간 해야할 일은 무엇인지, 현재 북한을 향한 접근이 한반도 전 지역의 영원한 평화로 이어질 수 있는 실질적인 평화 조약을 이끌어 낼 수 있을지를 토론할 수 있는 자리가 될 것입니다.

이 모임은 1차 세계대전 종전 100주년 기념일에 진행됩니다. 한국인들에게는 1차 세계대전이 멀게 느껴질지 모르겠지만, 오늘날의 군사력 증강과 끊임없이 이윤을 추구하는 경제 전략들에서 오는 위험들은 유럽의 비극으로 알려진1차 세계대전이 발발된 상황과 무섭게 닮아있습니다.

이에 관심이 있으신 분들이라면 누구나 모임에 참석하셔서 의견을 나누실 수 있습니다. 본 토론이 효과적으로 진행되어, 우리의 방안들이 구체적인 행동으로 전환할 수 있기를 희망합니다.


커먼즈 파운데이션


서울특별시 용산구 이태원1동 141-8

02 796-1839


“Corea as Commons” Asia Times

Asia Times

“Corea as Commons”

October 24, 2018

Emanuel Pastreich & Layne Hartwell


Could an emergent North Korea provide the world with a new, from-scratch benchmark of sustainable, collaborative economic and social development? With geopolitical change and emerging technologies, the idea of a national “commons” now looks increasingly feasible.

Relations between North and South Korea are changing so rapidly, the pressing question is no longer what the next step in this process of reconciliation will be, but rather where the peninsula is heading in the political, economic and cultural senses.

A door is opening for the institutional transformation of the “Hermit Kingdom” with new concepts and technologies. The implementation of new approaches to government and the building of new infrastructure could make North Korea an inspiring experiment that other nations can model. Read more of this post

“What do Koreans mean by ‘revolution’?” Korea Times

Korea Times

“What do Koreans mean by ‘revolution’?”

October 13, 2018

Emanuel Pastreich


I saw a television commercial for a Korean bank recently in which the word “revolution” (hyeongmyeong, 혁명, 革命) was repeated several times. It was striking that a term once associated with the far left is used now so prevalently in contemporary South Korea.

But what exactly does the term “revolution” mean today, especially in this period of rapid social, economic and technological transformation? Read more of this post

정부혁신취진협의회  (행정안전부)






2018년 10월 11일


@ 서울정부청사


이만열  (교육분야 위원)





“President Moon: It’s time to pardon Park Geun-hye” Asia Times

Asia Times

“President Moon: It’s time to pardon Park Geun-hye”

October 9, 2018

Emanuel Pastreich



Last week’s sentencing of former South Korean president Lee Myung-bak to 15 years in prison and a fine of 13 billion won (US$11.5 million) has sent shockwaves through Seoul, and around the world.

Although many are shocked to learn of the degree of corruption that exists in South Korea, no small number of my friends expressed their delight to see that there is a country that is capable of putting a corrupt leader in jail and making public his malfeasances. Read more of this post

Dire report from Incheon is Korea’s greatest achievement

The Most important thing to come out of Korea recently has nothing to do with North Korea!


A landmark report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change convened by the United Nations entitled “Global Warming of 1.5 C” was released in Songdo, Korea which presents a far more shocking vision for the immediate future than the corporate media was willing to acknowledge before. The report suggests that humanity faces catastrophic consequences of its carbon-centered economy and makes a clear break with the previous assumption that carbon trading schemes are sufficient to address the problem.


The report avoids much of the far more pessimistic predictions of many experts but goes further than any mainstream report so far.


Here is a summary:



This chapter frames the context, knowledge-base and assessment approaches used to understand the impacts of 1.5°C global warming above pre-industrial levels and related global greenhouse gas emission pathways, building on the IPCC Fifth Assessment Report (AR5), in the context of strengthening the global response to the threat of climate change, sustainable development and efforts to eradicate poverty. Human-induced warming reached approximately 1°C (±0.2°C likely range) above pre-industrial levels in 2017, increasing at 0.2°C (±0.1°C) per decade (high confidence).

Global warming is defined in this report as an increase in combined surface air and sea surface temperatures averaged over the globe and a 30-year period. Unless otherwise specified, warming is expressed relative to the period 1850-1900, used as an approximation of pre-industrial temperatures in AR5. For periods shorter than 30 years, warming refers to the estimated average temperature over the 30 years centered on that shorter period, accounting for the impact of any temperature fluctuations or trend within those 30 years. Accordingly, warming up to the decade 2006-2015 is assessed at 0.87°C (±0.12°C likely range). Since 2000, the estimated level of human-induced warming has been equal to the level of observed warming with a likely range of ±20% accounting for uncertainty due to contributions from solar and volcanic activity over the historical period (high confidence). {1.2.1} Warming greater than the global average has already been experienced in many regions and seasons, with average warming over land higher than over the ocean (high confidence).

Most land regions are experiencing greater warming than the global average, while most ocean regions are warming at a slower rate. Depending on the temperature dataset considered, 20-40% of the global human population live in regions that, by the decade 2006-2015, had already experienced warming of more than 1.5°C above pre-industrial in at least one season (medium confidence). {1.2.1 & 1.2.2} Past emissions alone are unlikely to raise global-mean temperature to 1.5°C above preindustrial levels but past emissions do commit to other changes, such as further sea level rise (high confidence). If all anthropogenic emissions (including aerosol-related) were reduced to zero immediately, any further warming beyond the 1°C already experienced would likely be less than 0.5°C over the next two to three decades (high confidence), and likely less than 0.5°C on a century timescale (medium confidence), due to the opposing effects of different climate processes and drivers.

A warming greater than 1.5°C is therefore not geophysically unavoidable: whether it will occur depends on future rates of emission reductions. {1.2.3, 1.2.4} 1.5°C-consistent emission pathways are defined as those that, given current knowledge of the climate response, provide a one-in-two to two-in-three chance of warming either remaining below 1.5°C, or returning to 1.5°C by around 2100 following an overshoot. Overshoot pathways are characterized by the peak magnitude of the overshoot, which may have implications for impacts. All 1.5°C-consistent pathways involve limiting cumulative emissions of long-lived greenhouse gases, including carbon dioxide and nitrous oxide, and substantial reductions in other climate forcers (high confidence). Limiting cumulative emissions requires either reducing net global emissions of longlived greenhouse gases to zero before the cumulative limit is reached, or net negative global emissions (anthropogenic removals) after the limit is exceeded. {1.2.3, 1.2.4, Cross-Chapter Boxes 1 and 2}

This report assesses projected impacts at a global average warming of 1.5°C and higher levels of warming. Global warming of 1.5°C is associated with global average surface temperatures fluctuating naturally on either side of 1.5°C, together with warming substantially greater than 1.5°C in many regions and seasons (high confidence), all of which must be taken into account in the assessment of impacts. Impacts at 1.5°C of warming also depend on the emission pathway to 1.5°C. Very different impacts result from pathways that remain below 1.5°C versus pathways that return to Final Government Draft Chapter 1 IPCC SR1.5 Do Not Cite, Quote or Distribute 1-5 Total pages: 61 1.5°C after a substantial overshoot, and when temperatures stabilize at 1.5°C versus a transient warming past 1.5°C. (medium confidence) {1.2.3, 1.3} Ethical considerations, and the principle of equity in particular, are central to this report, recognising that many of the impacts of warming up to and beyond 1.5°C, and some potential impacts of mitigation actions required to limit warming to 1.5°C, fall disproportionately on the poor and vulnerable (high confidence).

Equity has procedural and distributive dimensions and requires fairness in burden sharing, between generations, and between and within nations. In framing the objective of holding the increase in the global average temperature rise to well below 2°C above pre-industrial levels, and to pursue efforts to limit warming to 1.5°C, the Paris Agreement associates the principle of equity with the broader goals of poverty eradication and sustainable development, recognising that effective responses to climate change require a global collective effort that may be guided by the 2015 United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. {1.1.1} Climate adaptation refers to the actions taken to manage impacts of climate change by reducing vulnerability and exposure to its harmful effects and exploiting any potential benefits. Adaptation takes place at international, national and local levels. Subnational jurisdictions and entities, including urban and rural municipalities, are key to developing and reinforcing measures for reducing weather- and climate-related risks. Adaptation implementation faces several barriers including unavailability of up-to-date and locally-relevant information, lack of finance and technology, social values and attitudes, and institutional constraints (high confidence).

Adaptation is more likely to contribute to sustainable development when polices align with mitigation and poverty eradication goals (medium confidence) {1.1, 1.4} Ambitious mitigation actions are indispensable to limit warming to 1.5°C while achieving sustainable development and poverty eradication (high confidence). Ill-designed responses, however, could pose challenges especially—but not exclusively—for countries and regions contending with poverty and those requiring significant transformation of their energy systems. This report focuses on ‘climate-resilient development pathways’ , which aim to meet the goals of sustainable development, including climate adaptation and mitigation, poverty eradication and reducing inequalities.

But any feasible pathway that remains within 1.5°C involves synergies and trade-offs (high confidence). Significant uncertainty remains as to which pathways are more consistent with the principle of equity. {1.1.1, 1.4} Multiple forms of knowledge, including scientific evidence, narrative scenarios and prospective pathways, inform the understanding of 1.5°C. This report is informed by traditional evidence of the physical climate system and associated impacts and vulnerabilities of climate change, together with knowledge drawn from the perceptions of risk and the experiences of climate impacts and governance systems. Scenarios and pathways are used to explore conditions enabling goal-oriented futures while recognizing the significance of ethical considerations, the principle of equity, and the societal transformation needed. {1.2.3, 1.5.2} There is no single answer to the question of whether it is feasible to limit warming to 1.5°C and adapt to the consequences. Feasibility is considered in this report as the capacity of a system as a whole to achieve a specific outcome.

The global transformation that would be needed to limit warming to 1.5°C requires enabling conditions that reflect the links, synergies and trade-offs between mitigation, adaptation and sustainable development. These enabling conditions have many systemic dimensions—geophysical, environmental-ecological, technological, economic, socio-cultural and institutional—that may be considered through the unifying lens of the Anthropocene, acknowledging profound, differential but increasingly geologically significant human influences on the Earth system as a whole. This framing also emphasises the global interconnectivity of past, present and future Final Government Draft Chapter 1 IPCC SR1.5 Do Not Cite, Quote or Distribute 1-6 Total pages: 61 human–environment relations, highlighing the need and opportunities for integrated responses to achieve the goals of the Paris Agreement. {1.1, Cross-Chapter Box 1}

Moon and the opening of the green belts

The decision of the Moon administration to support the opening up of the “green belts” around Seoul to development by construction companies to provide housing suggests that we have ended up with the complete opposite of what the administration originally promised.

The Moon administration is taking the side of investment banks who are making a fortune out of keeping the price up housing high (even though there is a glut of housing still unabsorbed from the Lee Myung-bak era) in order to make sure that upper-middle-class employees of companies who put big money into their houses do not lose their shirts–and also to make sure that “housing retirement pensions” cooked up by investment banks do not lose their value.