Tag Archives: Taipei

Hsinchu magistrate protests river pollution

22 Mar

At a public hearing held at the Legislative Yuan yesterday afternoon, Hsinpu Township Council Speaker Wang Tseng-chi, left and wearing a headband, takes a cup of water collected from a polluted river at his home town in Hsinchu County, and challenges Minister Shen Shu-hung, front right, of the Environmental Protection Administration to drink the water.

The China Post news staff–Hsinchu County Magistrate Chiu Ching-chun  yesterday led county residents in a protest at the Legislative Yuan in Taipei against the pollution of the water source of Hsinpu Township, and called for the central government to do something about it.

The protest was mainly triggered by the fact that the Cabinet-level Environmental Protection Administration (EPA) suddenly reversed a decision which would have required two manufacturing plants — Chunghwa Picture Tubes Ltd. (CPT) and AU Optronics Corp. (AUO) — located in Longtan Township of Taoyuan County to release their waste water into rivers in Taoyuan County, instead of Hsinchu County.

The protesters called for the Legislative Yuan to help return justice to county residents by asking the EPA to stop the two high-tech firms from continuing polluting the river that supplies water to Hsinpu Township for drinking and irrigation purposes.

CPT and AUO have for 10 years released industrial waste water to Hsiaoli River in Hsinpu Township, a reservation area.

At the rally in front of the county government earlier yesterday morning, protesters wore headbands that read “Refuse to Drink Toxic Water” and shouted slogans that pledged their determination to stop CPT and AUO from polluting their drinking water source.

Magistrate Chiu said yesterday that EPA Minister Shen Shih-hung told lawmakers on March 19 that if AUO and CPT fail to find another waste water drainage location by the end of the month, their plants should be shut down.

“But we received on March 20 an official notice from the EPA declaring that Hsiaoli River will no longer serve as a source of drinking water, and that Hsinchu County residents should go upstream to where Hsiaoli and Fengshan rivers merge,” Chiu cited the EPA notice as saying.

He accused the central government of “legalizing a controversial measure” by permitting the two companies to keep polluting the river, damaging the health of local residents and imposing on the rights of local farmers to irrigate their crops with clean water.

The EPA notice to the county government reflected a Ministry of Economic Affairs (MOEA) decision on March 13 that Hsiaoli River will no longer serve as a source of drinking water and advising local residents and farmers draw water upstream where the river merges with Fengshan River.

To read full article go to source as cross-posted from here

Environmentalists protest against Danbei expressway project

22 Jun

By Hermia Lin

Cross-posted from here

Taipei, June 22 (CNA) Environmentalists and residents of Danshui in northern Taiwan gathered in front of the Environmental Protection Administration (EPA) Wednesday to protest against the proposed construction of an expressway along the north bank of the Danshui River.

It’s better to adopt low-carbon measures than to build expensive roads, the protesters said.

An EPA committee in April conditionally approved the construction of the 4.7 km Danbei (Danshui-Taipei) expressway. At a meeting Wednesday, the committee reaffirmed its decision.

The government has said the expressway would aid the development of Danshui Township, help to improve the flow of traffic and speed up evacuation in the event of a nuclear disaster.

However, environmental groups are opposed to project on grounds that it would destroy the mangrove wetlands along the Danshui River and damage the environment.

One of the protesters, Wang Yu-tsang who lives in Danshui, said he did not agree that the traffic congestion in the area could be solved simply by building such an expressway and he was worried about the adverse impact on the mangrove wetlands.

Moreover, the safety of cyclists will be compromised if the expressway is built, he said.

He suggested that the city government consider ways of improving Danshui’s public transportation system. Increasing the number of MRT trains to the city is one way to do so, he said.

Tsui Su-hsin, secretary general of the Green Citizens Action’s Alliance, said environmental groups are very disappointed at the EPA committee’s decision and will continue to oppose the project. They will petition New Taipei City Mayor Eric Chu to stop the project and will stage more protests in September, she said.

The EPA said in a news release Wednesday that the developers should consult with New Taipei City officials and the Council of Agriculture to confirm the boundaries between the construction site and the mangrove wetlands before the project begins. The developers should also conduct environmental impact studies for at least six years, the EPA said.