Tue, Aug 15, 2006 - Page 3 News List

Tainan chief begs Su to help save rare spoonbills

By Shelley Shan  /  STAFF REPORTER

Tainan County Commissioner Su Huan-chih (蘇煥智), of the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP), yesterday pleaded with Premier Su Tseng-chang (蘇貞昌) to halt immediately the construction of a petrochemical plant and a steel plant in the county to help ensure the survival of the black faced spoonbill.

The two projects have already passed the environmental impact evaluation stage. The steel plant will be built by the Yeh-Loong Group, and the petrochemical plant will be constructed by the Tuntex Group.

The sites for the two projects are close to the area where black faced spoonbills spend part of the year.

Su made the remarks during a press conference introducing his new book, entitled The Nostalgia of the Black Faced Spoonbill, in which he opposes the two development projects on the grounds they will be built in national scenic areas.

"The development of Pinnan Industrial Complex (濱南工業區) was a mess caused by former Tuntex Group chairman and fugitive tycoon Chen Yu-hao (陳由豪)," said Liu, adding that the projects would hurt the development of the county in the long run.

Su noted that the Premier should have a clear stance on development policy so that the different administrative departments know which rules to follow. He also hoped that the Executive Yuan would recognize the water supply issues these two facilities would face once they are finished.

Shieh Jyh-cherng (謝志誠), a professor at National Taiwan University, also present at the press conference, said that both development projects would consume large amounts of water and energy and emit massive amounts of carbon dioxide.

"The day these facilities are built is the day the black faced spoonbills face extinction," Shieh said.

The preliminary environmental impact assessments were completed by the Environmental Protection Administration in 1999. The entire evaluation was not finished until 2004 as the administration requested the county government provide detailed information on the environment. The written report was promulgated this year.

The report listed 27 major issues of concern for the two developments, including the sewage systems and exhaust emissions.

Liu Chug-chun (劉佳鈞), deputy director of the EPA's planning department, said even though the two projects have passed the environmental impact review stage, they still need to be approved by other related administrative authorities before construction can begin.

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