Fri, Mar 26, 2004 - Page 4 News List

Eco-parks to aid Taoyuan and Tainan

GREEN TECHNOLOGY The parks will promote the increasing development of environmentally friendly industries, but a timetable for construction is not set

By Chiu Yu-Tzu  /  STAFF REPORTER

Two eco-parks will be established in Taoyuan County and Tainan County to attract foreign and local investment in the field of green technology, the Environmental Protection Administration (EPA) said yesterday.

The EPA on Tuesday approved the Taoyuan and Tainan county governments' applications for establishing the eco-parks, which aim to promote green-energy industries.

They would be the nation's third and fourth eco-parks. In January last year two vacant sites in Hualien and Kaohsiung counties were chosen for the first two parks.

Four companies are involved in the eco-park in Kaohsiung County, the construction of which began last month.

According to Yang Ching-shi (楊慶熙), deputy director of the EPA's Solid Waste Control Bureau, a timetable for the construction of the two new eco-parks had not been finalized.

The EPA requires that details of the total area, exact location and infrastructure plan be submitted by the two county governments by April 26.

"Although the details of the schedule are still unavailable at this time, we remain committed to introducing advanced environmental technologies from overseas," Yang told the Taipei Times yesterday.

Yang said that the EPA would soon produce detailed pamphlets outlining potential business opportunities for both foreign and local environmental-technology firms.

On March 11, the Cabinet revised a 10-year national project aiming to build eco-industrial parks in northern, central and southern Taiwan, the EPA said.

The administrative budget for the project was increased from NT$5.08 billion to about NT$6.21 billion, with the predicted total area of eco-parks amounting to 123 hectares.

According to Lee Mun-she (李穆生), the director-general of Tainan County's Environmental Protection Bureau, the eco-park covering about 50 hectares of land in the county could be operational from early next year.

In order to attract foreign investors in the environmental-engineering sector, Tainan County Commissioner Su Huan-chih (蘇煥智) will spend two weeks visiting countries that deal in environmentally-friendly technologies from Sunday, including Japan, the US, Canada and the Netherlands.

Su will be accompanied by environmental experts from both the local governments and the government-backed Industrial Technology Research Institute (ITRI).

Lee said that the eco-park will complement the operations of nearby Tainan Science Park.

"Technologies treating waste solvents from high-tech firms, for example, will be in demand," Lee said.

Waste-to-energy technology involving catalysts would also be utilized, Lee said.

EPA officials said Taoyuan County's submission met the demands that future industrial development in the north would bring.

The establishment of green industrial parks in Taiwan aims to recycle resources -- making industry more ecologically friendly -- and upgrade environmental technologies.

To promote green energy research and development, the EPA solicited investment from leading firms such as Formosa Plastics Group and Du Pont.

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