Various environmental protection groups blasted the government's plan to build a freeway in eastern Taiwan at a public hearing yesterday, but a Ministry of Transportation and Communications official said that project will start by the end of the year as scheduled.
PFP Legislator Lee Hung-chun (
The environmentalists expressed their hope that the government will reconsider the plan to build a freeway between Ilan and Hualien and demanded to know why the project was finalized in the run-up to the Hualien county commissioner by-election, especially since Hualien already has a harbor, an airport, a recently widened highway and a newly electrified railway.
Both Chen Man-li (陳曼麗), chairman of the Home-maker's Union and Foundation, and Wu Tung-chieh (蘇治芬), executive director of the Green Formosa Front, said that a 10km tunnel that is part of the freeway plan is prone to earthquakes and of worrisome construction quality.
Green Citizen's Action Alliance Secretary-General Lai Wei-chih (
Robin Winkler, an American attorney who has lived in Taiwan for 26 years, also said that the country should stop its continuous development and start to pay attention to ecology and conservation issues.
Chi Hsu-ying (
Lee said that the decision to build the Suhua Freeway was made out of election considerations, while Su said that major construction projects should take into account the natural environment and the landscape, and should respect the voice of the local people.
Despite the opposition, Chen Fu-an (陳福安), a head engineer from the ministry's Taiwan Area National Expressway Engineering Bureau, said that the project has been studied since 1990 and that construction of the freeway will start as scheduled, beginning with tunnel construction.
A Taipei veterinarian is urging pet owners to avoid using insecticides around their homes, as their ingredients can be toxic to pets. Commercial-grade insecticides contain pyrethroids — organic compounds similar to natural pyrethrins, pesticides produced by flowers such as chrysanthemums — in quantities that are harmless to humans, but potentially fatal to cats and dogs, Asian Veterinary Specialist Referral Center veterinarian Chua Man-ling (蔡曼琳) said. Even in small quantities, pyrethroids are hazardous to cats, as they lack the metabolic enzymes needed to process them, Chua said. Cockroach sprays and ant traps are especially dangerous to pets as they contain boric acid, she
DOING ENOUGH? The HPA budgets NT$1.3 billion to prevent the health hazards of tobacco, but has no separate budget to fight teen drinking, a doctor said The government should step up alcohol education and prevention efforts, and allocate more of the budget to it, doctors said on Friday, citing the high consumption of alcohol among Taiwanese adolescents. One out of four 12-to-17-year-olds has consumed alcohol, said Yen Tsung-hai (顏宗海), director of Linkou Chang Gung Memorial Hospital’s Department of Clinical Toxicology. The Health Promotion Administration (HPA) budgets NT$1.3 billion (US$43.9 million) annually to prevent the health hazards of tobacco, but it has not allocated a separate budget for preventing teenage drinking or excessive alcohol use, Yen said. “There is no so-called ‘safe drinking level’ for minors,” because any amount consumed
The Fancy Frontier manga and anime expo held in Taipei over the weekend has sparked controversy, after a participant allegedly contravened the Act on Offenses Against Sexual Morality (妨害風化罪) by publicly exposing her private parts during a photo shoot. The two-day event opened at the Expo Dome at the Taipei Expo Park on Saturday, attracting numerous comic and anime creators, cosplayers, photographers and fans. Allegedly, a female cosplayer who was not wearing any underwear lifted up her skirt and revealed her private parts at an outdoor photography area near the venue. Event organizers said yesterday that to prevent indecent exposure, they have since
DREAMING OF TRAVEL: About 7,000 people applied for the experience, with about 60 chosen for the first flight yesterday, which includes boarding an airplane Starved of the travel experience during COVID-19? Taipei International Airport (Songshan airport) has the solution — a fake itinerary where you check in, go through passport control and security, and even board the aircraft. You just never leave. The airport yesterday began offering travelers the chance to do just that, with about 60 people eager to get going, albeit to nowhere. About 7,000 people applied to take part, with the winners chosen by random. More fake flight experiences are to take place in the coming weeks. “I really want to leave the country, but because of the pandemic, lots of flights cannot fly,”