Hyundai Motor's Chung urges the world to focus on clean energy
He said that this is important for the climate crisis and for addressing energy poverty.
“Now is the time for bold decisions,” Chung said on Sunday in speech delivered at the Business 20 (B20) event, held in Bali, Indonesia. “And now is the time for leadership.”
The B20 is held in tandem with the G20, which brings together the leaders of the world's 19 largest economies and the EU. Russian President Vladimir Putin is not attending this year.
President Yoon Suk-yeol is attending the G20.
Chung spoke on “Energy Poverty and Accelerate a Just and Orderly Sustainable Energy Use,” during the two-day business event.
The meeting is attended by some 2,000 representatives of major global companies from the G20 countries. Jeff Bezos of Amazon, Robin Zeng, CATL chairman, and Anthony Tan, Grab co-founder and CEO are attending.
“The world is facing a climate change crisis,” Chung said. “The auto industry is rethinking energy and investing in renewable energy.”
Chung stressed that tackling climate change is not an “endeavor” one can pursue alone. He also noted that the various economic challenges that arose since the global pandemic has raised the need in accelerating the transition to sustainable energy.
He noted that energy poverty is a crucial problem that threatens not only safety but also health and welfare.
“It’s not easy to move away from fossil fuels, which are the key sources of greenhouse gases,” Chung said. “But in every action with value, there is always difficulty that follows."
“Government and industry can provide the right incentives to businesses and consumers to embrace clean energy,” Chung said. “We need the strong support of global leaders who create policies that encourage investment in these new resources and technologies.”
During his speech, Chung noted Hyundai Motor Group’s own efforts in battling climate change, including minimizing carbon emissions in building the company’s first automotive production plant in Indonesia that opened earlier this year.
“The group’s Slovakia plant has been operating on 100 percent renewable energy since 2019 and its Czech plant is doing the same starting in 2022,” Chung said.
He also championed hydrogen energy as a clean energy solution.
“With renewables comes different challenges, including limits on supply and shortages,” Chung said. “Hydrogen can solve many of these issues. And now, there is a global consensus on the importance of hydrogen as a future, limitless energy solution.”
Hyundai Motor and Kia are members of RE100, a global initiative of private companies in committing to 100 percent renewable energy. The Korean automaker is aiming for 100 percent renewable energy by 2045.
On Sunday, Hyundai Motor signed a contract with Indonesia’s PT Adaro Minerals Indonesia for the provision of a stable supply of aluminum.
Not only will the Korean automaker receive a supply of aluminum from the Indonesia producer, it will be the first recipient of low-carbon aluminum, which is in aligned with Hyundai Motor’s carbon neutrality commitment.
A year ago, Adaro Minerals Indonesia announced its plans of building a $728 million aluminum smelter
“Hyundai Motor is actively cooperating with Indonesia in a wide array of automotive endeavors, including the automotive manufacturing plant as well as the building of joint battery cell production plant,” said a Hyundai Motor official. “The cooperation on aluminum supply will further strengthen the partnership with Indonesia by creating synergy.”
Hyundai Motor’s first manufacturing plant in Indonesia, which has an annual production capacity of 150,000 units, opened in March.
The plant, the company's first in Southeast Asia, will produce EVs.
A Hyundai Motor-LG Energy Solution battery cell production plant broke ground in September last year. The production plant will produce 10 gigawatt hours of battery cells annually, which can power 150,000 EVs. It is to be completed in the first half of next year.
The signing ceremony was attended by Chung, Hyundai Motor CEO Chang Jae-hoon, Adaro’s President Commissioner Edwin Soeryadjaya, Adaro Energy Indonesia President Director Garibaldi Thohir and Adaro Energy Vice President Director Christian Ariano Rachmat.
BY LEE HO-JEONG [email@example.com]