US and South Korea To Cooperate On Environment

The United States of America and Republic of Korea today signed the Environmental Cooperation Agreement.

At the signing ceremony, Under Secretary Robert D. Hormats for Economic, Energy and Agricultural Affairs said the United States and Republic of Kore have a deeply rooted partnership which has endured over decades.

“Our alliance as Secretary Clinton noted, is a symbol of security, stability, peace, and prosperity.”

– Mr. Hormats

south korea
The statue of MacArthur at South Korea Jayu (Freedom) Park.

He stressed that the Environmental Cooperation Agreement will further strengthen their partnership.

“Together, we can: combat illegal logging and trade in wildlife; reduce air and water pollution; increase the use of environmentally friendly materials and the recycling of waste; and implement measures to ensure that our transportation sectors our cars, airplanes, and ships meet high environmental standards.”

– Mr. Hormats

He noted that the Environmental Cooperation Agreement was negotiated in parallel with the U.S.-Korea Free Trade Agreement, which President Obama noted as having groundbreaking protections for the environment during President Lee’s October visit to the United States.

“The two texts reference one another, which, combined, will orient the United States and Korea to lead the world as we transition to a green economy.”

– Mr. Hormats

He stressed that the transition has the potential to grow thier economies and create millions of jobs.

“Despite the obstacles ahead, I have high hopes because our nations have repeatedly exceeded expectations over the past fifty years. Recall that Korea grew from nominal per capita GDP of approximately $100 in 1962 to almost $21,000 in 2010.”

– Mr. Hormats

He noted that improvements in labor productivity was a key component of our economic growth in the twentieth-century. He added that the management of natural resources will define their success in the 21st century.

Mr. Hormats pointed out that, at the current level of resource productivity, the planet can feed and accommodate around 1.5 billion people at the OECD country standard of living.

“The world today has 7 billion people. There is an obvious gap, which is why we need new ideas and new solutions to raise standards of living around the world in a way that’s sustainable, as well as change the way we ourselves live. The U.S.-Korea Environmental Cooperation Agreement inches us towards that reality.”

– Mr. Hormats

Mina Fabulous
Mina Fabulous follows the news, especially what is going on in the US State Department. Mina turns State Department waffle into plain English. Mina Fabulous is the pen name of Carmen Avalino, the NewsBlaze production editor. When she isn't preparing stories for NewsBlaze writers, she writes stories, but to separate her editing and writing identities, she uses the name given by her family and friends.