The Consumers’ Foundation said that only 16.8 percent of the candidates running in the Jan. 14 presidential and legislative elections had signed a pledge to reduce the number of campaign flags and banners to help promote low--carbon elections.
The foundation said it distributed 178 of the pledges last month to candidates of all political stripes who are taking part in the elections, but only 28 of them had signed and returned the letters.
The initiative was launched in Taichung City in 2002, with 99 percent of the city’s candidates signing up. The move has helped reduce the volume of trashed banners and advertisements from elections by 60 percent since then, the foundation said.
The foundation also cited the example of the special municipality elections in November last year and said that Greater Taichung should be held up as a model for green elections, with only 7,476 banners being trashed in the area, compared with more than 310,000 banners in New Taipei City (新北市), 135,283 in Taipei, 41,261 in Greater Kaohsiung and 33,985 in Greater Tainan.
According to a poll cited by the foundation, the public considered the hanging of banners and flags during election campaigns as the “ugliest street scene.”
The foundation urged the candidates to respond to the call and step up efforts to reduce carbon emissions during the election period.