Hanwha Shows Off Its Green Thumb
by Planting Trees
- Hanwha has planted its 7th Solar Forest to combat atmospheric dust that blow from overseas onto the Korean Peninsula
- The saplings have been raised in a nursery using solar energy generated from Hanwha Q CELLS solar modules
[November 15, 2018] Over 100 Hanwha employees and volunteers from the general public came out on a chilly October morning in the outskirts of Incheon, Korea to help plant the seventh Hanwha Solar Forest. The cold weather was soon forgotten, as everyone got absorbed in their work to dig, plant and tamp down the soil.
The day marked the beginning of Hanwha’s month-long project to plant over 6,000 trees atop a municipal landfill in an area the size of three football fields. The location for the seventh Hanwha Solar Forest was specifically chosen because it lies directly along the path of atmospheric dust that have annually made their way across Korea from deserts overseas. The atmospheric dust contains pollutants and have progressively gotten worse over the years. The forest’s trees, once fully grown – including zelkova, pine, and oak trees – will play a vital role in reducing the dust that have been plaguing the capital city of Seoul.
Joining forces for a greener future
Leading up to the tree planting, people were invited to send supportive messages through the campaign’s website and social media. For each message received, Hanwha donated 3Wh of solar energy to power the forest’s nursery. Over 55,000 messages were received. This was more than ten times the number of messages expected.
The volunteers who planted trees to build the 7th Hanwha Solar Forest were a diverse group. They included Sun-Mok Choi, President & Head of the Hanwha Communications Committee, Hyungsoo Kim, CEO of social venture Tree Planet, employees from Hanwha, and families with young children from the general public.
“I used to think that the strength of the Hanwha Solar Forest campaign was in its environmentally-friendly reforestation efforts,” said President Choi. “But seeing everyone out here in the cold and on a weekend, made me realize that its true strength is in the passion and enthusiasm that they elicit from people.”
Sustainable reforestation on a global scale
Hanwha Solar Forest is a global campaign that began in partnership with Tree Planet (a social venture company in S. Korea). Its mission is to raise public awareness of environmental problems that lead to climate change, deforestation, desertification, and air pollution.
The goal of the campaign is to rejuvenate deforested areas and at the same time, help reverse global warming. By the end of November 2018, Hanwha Solar Forest will have planted over 499,000 trees, covering over 1.33 million square meters across Korea, China, and Mongolia.
What makes Hanwha Solar Forest truly impressive is that it’s more than just planting trees. As ironic as it may sound, the electricity needed to power watering systems at tree nurseries would’ve normally come from fossil fuels, if not for Hanwha. Hanwha, however, grows its forest’s saplings in a nursery powered by solar modules provided by Hanwha Q CELLS, making it a truly eco-friendly project.
This is not the first time that Hanwha has applied its clean energy technology to combat problems arising from climate change and energy poverty. One example is through Hanwha Happy Sunshine campaign where renewable energy independence is promoted. Through this program, Hanwha donates solar panels and power systems to welfare facilities, remote villages, and islands. Since 2011, Hanwha Happy Sunshine has donated solar panels and power systems to 254 community development projects across East Asia.
A forest that saves lives
Hanwha Solar Forest operates tirelessly in support of the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals and the far reaching positive effects reforestation efforts have. Beyond environmental conservations, Hanwha Solar Forests also have a positive social impact. The people of Tujin Nars Nature Reserve in Mongolia were originally forced to abandon their homes due to encroaching desertification caused by illegal logging and arson. However, when Hanwha planted 230,000 trees, air and water quality of Tujin Nars improved and its people were able to return home and rebuild their lives.
Hanwha’s constant efforts were recognized by the United Nations. Its Solar Forests were cited as a model example of reforestation at the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification in 2011. And in July of 2018 at a UN High-Levels Political Forum on sustainable development, the Hanwha Solar Forests were praised again as an example of how corporate partnerships can contribute to sustainable development.
Hanwha Group, founded in 1952, is one of the Top-Ten business enterprises in South Korea and a “FORTUNE Global 500” company. Hanwha Group has 61 domestic affiliates and 325 global networks in three major sectors: manufacturing and construction, finance, and services and leisure. With more than 65 years track record of industrial leadership, Hanwha’s manufacturing and construction businesses encompass a broad range of fields from chemicals & materials, aerospace & mechatronics, total solar energy solutions, and global construction. The finance network, covering insurance, asset management and securities, is the second largest non-bank financial group in South Korea. The services and leisure sector offers premium lifestyle services with retail and resort businesses.
For more information, visit: www.hanwha.com
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