The European Chamber of Commerce Taipei (ECCT) yesterday called for a collaborative effort from the Taiwanese government, businesses and individuals to curb greenhouse gas emissions and improve energy efficiency.
If parties do not take immediate action, Taiwan’s greenhouse gas emissions will rise to the equivalent of 418 million tonnes of carbon dioxide in 2025 and climb further to 452 million tonnes by 2030, the ECCT said in a report.
The trade organization warned that Taiwan would miss the opportunity to improve its energy security, develop clean technology industries and improve its competitiveness if the government does not implement effective energy policies.
The government should also look into improving energy efficiency, which the ECCT said it believed is the most potentially effective method for greenhouse gas reduction.
“Improving energy efficiency would put Taiwan on the path to a low-carbon, sustainable and prosperous future. Far better results will be achieved if all stakeholders join forces,” ECCT chairman Chris James wrote in the report, titled Low Carbon Taiwan 2030 — Solutions for a low carbon future.
According to the report, the largest carbon emitter in Taiwan, the power sector, accounted for up to 60 percent of total emissions in 2010 because it generates power using fossil fuels.
By adopting ways of generating power with renewable sources, Taiwan could reduce emmisions by 105 million tonnes per year by 2030, the report said.
The report added that improving the energy efficiency of vehicles, buildings and industrial equipment has the potential to cut emissions from the business sector by 34 percent by 2030.
The ECCT also suggested forcing greenhouse gas emitting entities, whether individuals or companies, to pay for their emissions through a carbon tax or cap- and-trade system.
To reduce carbon emission by as much as 50 percent and return to 2005 level, the Taiwanese government and private sectors would need to invest US$6 billion per year in carbon reduction and renewable energy technologies from now until 2030, Davis Lin (林璟驊), head of the US-based consulting firm McKinsey & Co’s Taipei office, said yesterday.