A survey on the sources of sediment pollution in the Dahan River (大漢溪), a tributary of the Tamsui River (淡水河), will begin soon as part of the government’s efforts to clean up the nation’s major rivers, the Environmental Protection Administration (EPA) said.
“The Dahan is the first target because initial surveys show that its sediment has suffered the most serious heavy-metal pollution among all rivers,” said Tsai Hung-teh (蔡鴻德), executive secretary of the agency’s Soil and Groundwater Pollution Remediation Fund Management Board.
The new survey would focus on tracking the sources of pollution and how the pollutants are spread, Tsai said after a meeting with experts on river pollution.
The board began looking into water and sediment pollution in major rivers in 1997 and has completed tests for heavy metals and organic pollutants in 27 rivers, Tsai said.
“It was discovered that the water and sediment of more than one-third of those rivers were seriously polluted,” Tsai said, adding that the Dahan had the highest copper content in its sediment compared with other rivers.
The river also ranked among the top five in terms of zinc and nickel content levels in its sediment and water, Tsai said.
The new survey will start from the Sanying Bridge in the upper stretch of the Dahan and end at estuary six of the Tamsui River, Tsai said, adding that the Tamsui’s two other branches — the Sindian and the Keelung rivers — would also be covered in the study.
“The project will cost about NT$21 million [US$697,000] and is scheduled for completion by the end of 2013,” Tsai said.
Meanwhile, the New Taipei City Government reminded residents not to harvest vegetables grown on artificial wetlands along the Dahan and Tamsui rivers because such crops may contain toxic chemicals or heavy metals.
“The vegetables have been planted to help purify river water, but they are not edible because some of them may absorb toxic pollutants in the rivers water or sediment,” a city official said.
‘LONE WOLF’: The suspect was difficult to locate, as he did not use a cellphone, did not contact family and often lived in abandoned sites or parks, police said Taipei police on Thursday morning arrested a man accused of numerous burglaries and at least 14 incidents of sexual assault spanning more than 20 years, in what might be the nation’s most notorious crime spree in recent years. Sixty-year-old Tu Ming-lang (涂明朗) — who was yesterday placed in judicial detention, after a judge determined he was a flight risk without a fixed address — faces multiple charges of sexual assault and burglary, police said. A task force comprised of various law enforcement agencies arrested Tu as part of an investigation into an April 28 burglary in Daan District (大安), in which a
Ninth graders were asked to define “trolling” on this year’s standardized exam, reflecting efforts to make the test better reflect real-life situations. Adjustments to this year’s Comprehensive Assessment Program for Junior High School Students were revealed on Sunday, after the last cohort of students completed the test over the weekend. The Ministry of Education solicited feedback about the test from teachers, who approved of the new question in the English portion. Not only was question No. 20 “very much in line with real-life situations,” but it also used a new style in which students were asked to ascertain the correct dictionary definition based
Taiwan is on alert for monkeypox, a rare viral disease that has caused 87 infections in 11 countries over the past three weeks, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) said on Saturday. The WHO on Friday convened an emergency session to discuss a sudden outbreak of monkeypox in North America and Europe. Since the beginning of this month, 87 confirmed cases and 28 possible cases have been identified in 11 countries. The countries with the highest case counts are England with 29 cases, and Portugal and Spain with 23 each. Monkeypox is a viral zoonotic disease occurring primarily in the tropical rainforest areas
ADAPTING: The CECC said the policy change would happen this week at the earliest, while PCR testing stations would be used to diagnose people and prescribe drugs The general public would be able to use a positive rapid test result that has been confirmed by a doctor for COVID-19 diagnosis starting later this week at the soonest, the Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) said yesterday, as it reported 79,441 new local infections and 53 deaths. The center on Saturday announced that it was expanding the rapid test diagnosis policy to people living in indigenous townships and outlying islands, starting today. Minister of Health and Welfare Chen Shih-chung (陳時中), who heads the center, yesterday said the policy might be further expanded to include “all people” this week, at the soonest. He