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Energy ‘attention’ warning issued amid rising oil prices

Energy ‘attention’ warning issued amid rising oil prices

Posted December. 31, 2010 10:08,   

Updated January. 15, 2016 14:46


Rising high oil prices and the cold spell in Korea mean energy is in short supply.

The Knowledge Economy Ministry in a "crisis evaluation meeting" Thursday issued an "attention" warning according to the emergency energy crisis manual.

Depending on the price of oil per barrel, the energy crisis is categorized into “attention” (90-100 U.S. dollars); “caution” (100-130 dollars); “warning” (130-150 dollars); and “danger” (more than 150 dollars).

The price of Dubai crude exceeded 90 dollars per barrel for the fifth consecutive day, continuing the trend of high oil prices. As of Wednesday, the average price of a liter of gas in Korea was 1,808.27 won (1.59 dollars).

“With the recent U.S. economic recovery, oil demand has increased and cold spells around the world are pushing up international oil prices,” the ministry said. “We drew attention to prevent our trade account balance from getting worse due to high oil prices.”

To cut energy consumption, the energy conservation status of government and large buildings will be randomly checked. The ministry will also closely monitor the price movement of oil products to reduce the impact on the people, adding, “If oil prices continue to go up, a rise in energy bills is inevitable.”

If the energy crisis level reaches “caution,” all lights on monuments, fountains and bridges maintained by provincial and municipal governments and public agencies will be turned off. A request for turning off landscape lights such as those on apartment rooftops or neon signs of entertainment businesses can also be made.

“Boiler lamp oil” will be eliminated from July. A mixture of diesel and lamp oil, boiler lamp oil was introduced to subsidize heating for low-income people in 1998, but with oil prices rising, the oil has been illegally used for vehicles such as dump trucks and buses.

A ministry source said, “We decided to eliminate (boiler lamp) oil because of concerns over tax evasion and car safety. Boiler users can use other lamp oil instead of boiler lamp oil.”