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Yellow Sand : assessment of on-going cooperative efforts and suggestions for the future

Title
Yellow Sand : assessment of on-going cooperative efforts and suggestions for the future
Authors
양기실
Issue Date
2001
Department/Major
국제대학원 국제학과
Publisher
이화여자대학교 국제대학원
Degree
Master
Abstract
본 논문은 동북 아시아 지역의 황사 문제 해결을 위한 각 국가, 지역 및 국제적인 환경 협력 노력을 협력의 기본 원칙과 환경 관리 체제에 관한 이론들을 토대로 평가하고, 나아가 협력의 효과를 증대 시킬 방안들을 제시한다. 중국은 1980년대 이후 전례 없이 빠른 경제적 성장을 이루었다. 그러나, 에너지의 75% 이상을 화석 연료에 의존하는 중국은 미국에 이어 세계에서 두 번째로 많은 아황산가스 배출국이 되었으며, 세계보건기구(WHO)가 선정한 세계 10대 대기 오염도시에 9곳이 포함될 정도로 대기 오염이 심각하다. 또한 도시의 발달 및 인구 증가로 인한 사막화 현상이 급속도로 심화되어 현재 2,460 평방 킬로미터의 토지가 매년 사막으로 변하고 있다. 이러한 상황아래 중국에서 한국으로 이동하는 황사의 양과 횟수는 증가할 것이 분명하다. 특히 황사는 단순한 먼지가 아니라 다량의 중금속, 다이옥신, 그리고 아황산가스 및 질소 산화물 등을 포함하고 있다는 조사 결과를 놓고 볼 때 황사 문제의 심각성과 피해에 대한 경각심이 일어난다. 현재 중국, 한국, 그리고 일본은 황사 문제에 대한 정부 및 민간 차원에서의 다양한 황사 방지 프로젝트를 다수 진행 중이다. 그러나, 그 사업들간의 연계성의 결여로 인해 생산성과 효율성이 떨어지며, 거시적인 안목에서의 체계성과 틀이 마련되어 있지 않다. 또한 세 나라는 많은 재정을 산림 복원 사업에 집중적으로 투입하여 펼쳐나가고 있지만, 산림 복원 사업은 50년에서 100년이 지난 후에야 그 황사 방지 역할을 발휘하게 되어 있어 사업의 성공을 확신하기 힘들다. 따라서 사업의 효율성을 높이기 위해서는 민간 기구의 참여를 적극 유도하며, 관련 국제 기구 및 협정들과의 연계를 통한 윤활한 자금 조달과 기술 협력을 도모할 필요가 있다. 이제 황사 문제는 더 이상 동북 아시아에 국한된 지역적인 문제가 아니라 국제적인 문제로 대두되고 있다. 황사 문제에 대한 거시적인 대책을 전담할 독립적인 국제 환경 체제의 설립을 적극 고려해 보는 것이 바람직하다. ; This study examines one of the most pressing environmental issues in Northeast Asia, the yellow sand phenomenon. With rapid coal-dependent industrialization and increasing desertification in China, this problem is expected to not only persist but also grow in severity. Along with known negative effects of yellow sand such as respiratory and eye illnesses for humans, and decreased growth and extinction of plant species, it is being studied for more dire consequences: outbreak of foot-and-mouth disease, increase in dioxin, sulphur oxides (SOx) and nitrogen oxides (NOx). In consideration of the transboundary characteristics of yellow sand problem, this study reviews and analyzes on-going efforts in different sectors and governments to alleviate the yellow sand problem. In addition, this study explores ways to increase efficiency of remedying measures. In particular, a possible framework for a super-regime that can effectively govern the yellow sand problem is suggested as a future policy recommendation. As a research methodology, secondary data analysis is used for conceptual-substantive reasons. Unobtrusive data such as archival records enable longitudinal research and provide greater scope and depth to the study. By analyzing data collected in different times and locations, comparisons within and between nations become possible. Also, with the proliferation of the Internet, governmental documents and various reports, editorials, news articles, and other information produced or transmitted by the mass media have become readily accessible and voluminous. The main findings of the study reveal that China, Korea and Japan have been putting concerted efforts and mutually cooperated to combat the yellow sand problem. Joint projects have been pursued not only in the government level, but also in the private, regional and international levels. Yet, several weaknesses are observed with the on-going efforts. First, while afforestation projects have been regarded as the most favored solution to combat the yellow sand problem, there is no guarantee that they will be effective. It takes 50 to 100 years for the projects to produce any tangible results. With rapid industrialization and urbanization, the environmental degradation of China has been accelerated and the future environmental situation may be quite different from the present. Second, the on-going endeavors are not comprehensively planned and implemented. China plans and proposes the joint projects, and Japan and Korea assist in implementation and research with funding and technology. This provides a room for China to give a greater consideration to its national priority, industrialization, in planning the projects, and undermine environmental concerns. At the same time, Japan and Korea lose their chances to reflect their national interests and concerns. Thus, both Japan and Korea should be more actively involved in the planning in order to safeguard the productivity of the joint projects, and to make sure that the projects equally reflect the interests of all three countries. Third, because different ministries of the Korean government have indiscriminately and independently taken various endeavors to tackle the yellow sand problem, inefficient allocation of resources has been resulted. In contrast with the Japanese government, which has sponsored its non-governmental groups (NGO) to implement afforestation projects and directly engaged in research projects, the Korean government has not encouraged participation of its NGOs and involved in all forms of joint projects. Since NGOs can competently perform low technology-requiring projects such as afforestation projects with less resource and more efficiency, the Korean government should encourage participation of its non-governmental groups by sponsoring funds. Instead, the government should concentrate its efforts in projects that require government-level planning and expertise. At the same time, the ministries should negotiate and cooperate to develop a comprehensive plan in order to streamline and further effectuate their efforts. Since a state has a responsibility not to infringe on other states interests, China should be subject to certain binding responsibility. Without any slow-down in development and the reduction in emission rates, the yellow sand problem can not be mitigated despite the on-going joint efforts. This paper recommends a binding agreement or convention, and an umbrella regime that can enforce China to commit to the problem and to comply with its obligations. Such regime can also contribute to facilitated communications with international organizations and attraction of more international attention and funding.
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