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Environmental Protection Activities

  • Environmental Protection Activities

    Environmental pollution by commercial facilities at the entrance of Mt. Mudeung

    Mt. Mudeung was designated as a provincial park in 1972. During the 1980s the area was one of the most popular vacation destinations in South Korea.
    The two districts at the entrance of Mudeungsan – Jeungsimsa Temple district and Wonhyosa Temple district – were crowded with many recklessly established restaurants and lodgings.
    Such densely located group facilities emitted waste water and caused serious natural damage.
    In this situation, the local government and citizens who loved to protect Mudeungsan joined forces from 1996 until 2010 to move such facilities and restore the local vegetation.
    As of 2016, there remains only part of the commercial enterprises in the Wonhyosa Temple district. With their decrepit facilities there exists a possibility of waste water inflow into the adjacent valley. The Gwangju-si government is working to relocate the remaining facilities in a 16.8 ha area at the Wonhyosa Temple and is restoring the local vegetation.
    It is thought that, thanks to such efforts, the damage to the Mudeungsan environment created during the development processes can be recovered(See the below figure).

    Environmental pollution by commercial facilities at the entrance of Mt. Mudeung
    Mudeungsan area recovery status by restoration projects. A: Military base relocation from Mudeungsan summit. B: Jeungsimsa entrance restoration. C: Park restoration.
  • Environmental Protection Activities

    Military base located on Mudeungsan summit

    South Korea faced a special political situation after the 1953 ceasefire between the North and South.
    As part of the efforts to reinforce national defense in this situation, three artillery units under the command of Air Force 8989 troop were set up in 1966 on three Mudeungsan peaks (Chunwangbong, Jiwanbong, and Inwangbong Peaks) and around the Jungbong area.
    Since the military base establishment, the natural environment has been continuously damaged and visitors have to be controlled for issues such as security.
    In this situation, civic groups and others have raised their voices calling for solutions to such problems. The Gwangju-si government has begun the relocation project by concluding an agreement with the air force bases in November, 1996. Thanks to such efforts, part of 30 Aspiring Geopark Proposal Submission the bases were withdrawn from Joongbong and Chunwangbong Peak and restoration work has been performed.
    The municipal government intends to continue consultation with the air force to make the relocation project a success and return the Mudeungsan Area Geopark to visitors in its natural status.