KEPCO Aims to be Energy Platform Company by Utilizing Big Data
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KEPCO Aims to be Energy Platform Company by Utilizing Big Data
Company strives to explore next-generation growth engines to brace for 4th industrial revolution

27(Tue), Jun, 2017

President Cho Hwan-eik of Korea Electric Power Corp. (KEPCO) gives an appointment letter to Prof. Cha Sang-gyun of Seoul National Univeristy who was tapped as chairman of a committee designed to purse “Digital KEPCO’ based on big data and ICT to prepare for the advent of the 4th Industrial Revolution at the KEPCO Art Center in Seoul on June 2. (Photo: KEPCO)

President Cho Hwan-eik of Korea Electric Power Corp. (KEPCO) disclosed his company’s willingness to diversify his businesses, which now focus on electricity wholesaling to new growth engines related to the advent of the 4th Industrial Revolution, including next-generation power management. 

“Of late, KEPCO has posted better business performances thanks to such special situations as proceeds accrued from the disposing of the site of KEPCO headquarters in Samseong-dong, Seoul, and low crude oil prices,” KEPCO President Cho said in a recent interview. “The outlook of the power whole-sale business (KEPCO) has so far involved is not rosy due to raw material and equipment price fluctuations and diverse outside environment changes and rising costs from conflicts,” he added. 

Global utility companies have seen capitalization and business performances decline, Cho said. He stressed that KEPCO will find breakthroughs, including next-generation power management related to the 4th Industrial Revolution.

President Cho said KEPCO will enter the big data profit-making business this year. KEPCO owns about 3 trillion big data points involving power transmission, transformation, and distribution and 6 trillion additional big data points related to power trades. KEPCO plans to venture into bid data and cloud platform businesses by processing data that the company has so far discarded. For instance, the company seeks to find new business models, including a business of selling power solutions, including one of producing maps of districts consuming larger power volumes compared to population.

President Cho said he was impressed when he saw “Hidden Figures,” an American biographical film based on African American female mathematicians, who had contributed to space exploration by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) in the 1960s. He emphasized the need for hiring hidden gifted talents, saying that big entities like KEPCO should have had a corporate culture prodding individuals’ creativity.

Cho said KEPCO will participate in an international bid to acquire a British government project to build the Moorside Nuclear Power Station in northwestern U.K. He made the remarks at a meeting with reporters in Sejong City on March 21 after a regular meeting of KEPCO’s board of directors where he was officially reelected for another year for the second time after finishing his initial three-year term. 

Power Cos. Invest 7.5 Tln won over 5 Yrs to halve ‘Fine Dust’ Emissions

KEPCO and utility public entities have decided to set aside 7.5 trillion won to reduce “fine dust,” caused by the operation of coal-fired power units.

KEPCO, Korea South-East Power (KOEN), Korea Midland Power (KOMIPO), Korea Western Power (KOWEPO), Korea Southern Power (KOSPO), and Korea East-West Power (EWP) announced the plan as part of efforts to combat pollution.

The plan comes after the government decided to temporarily halt the operation of eight out of 10 coal-fired power plants that are more than 30 years old. 

KEPCO and the power companies plan to halve fine dust emissions by 2022. The plan calls for steeper cuts in fine dust emissions than the 30 percent reduction President Moon Jae-in had promised during his presidential election campaign.

To this end, KEPCO and the five power companies decided to invest a combined 7.5 trillion won over five years. Out of the total, 6.2 trillion won will be used to replace the existing power facilities. And the remaining 1.3 trillion won will be invested to strengthen eco-friendly power facilities of power plants now under construction. In particular, investments in eco-friendly facilities of a cluster of power plants in the Chungcheongnam-do area will be front-loaded. KEPCO plans to expand fine dust monitoring stations to determine exact amounts of fine dust emissions. Outcomes of measuring fine dust will be released to the public in a transparent process, and a management-led committee designed to cope with fine dust emissions will take stock of how to implement the fine dust reduction plan, a KEPCO official said. 

The government is considering expanding the temporary shutdown of old coal-fired power plants. President Moon Jae-in plans to permanently close the 10 coal power units by the time his term ends in 2022. 

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