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S. Korea to 'wage war' on fine dust pollution: Ban Ki-moon Updated: 2019-03-22 07:24:26 KST

Like going to war is how the head of the new government organization described his resolve to fight the fine dust pollution cloaking the nation.
Former UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, who accepted the president's offer to run the new anti-pollution organization, said that despite concerns about taking the job he could not sit back and watch the Korean people suffocate.

"I don't have a solution to the problem yet. But we can settle this if we can accurately assess the source of the problem, find a solution and carry it out."

He then called on individuals, businesses, politicians and the government to do their part in making the air more breathable.
And he said that it's important to first scientifically identify the sources, both local and overseas, and then find targeted solutions.
But he said the new organization can't do it alone.

"All parts of the government have to fight this war with determination. As we take on the dust, there can be no ideology, factions or borders."

A significant part of the fine dust in Korea blows over from China, though it also produces its own at coal power plants and from diesel cars.
It's even become a political and economic issue and has been officially designated a "social disaster" to free up state funds to deal with it.
A local economic think tank has found that fine dust costs the nation some 3.7 billion U.S. dollars last year, taking up two tenths of a percent of its GDP.

"Hopes are high that the former UN chief, with his years of experience in international diplomacy and the environment, will eventually put an end to this chronic issue of fine dust once and for all.
Shin Se-min, Arirang News."
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