Tue, May 16, 2017 - Page 3 News List

Shalun development might risk animals, group says

By Lin Chia-nan  /  Staff reporter

A “green” energy technology park being built in Shalun area (沙崙) in Tainan’s Gueiren District (歸仁) might endanger ring-necked pheasants and other animals in Shalun Farm, and turn the surrounding area into a “roadkill graveyard,” environmentalists said on Thursday.

The 22.77 hectare technology park covering is included in the Executive Yuan’s Forward-looking Infrastructure Development Program as a test site for “green” energy and comes at a cost of NT$16.2 billion (US$537 million).

A separate project to build a world-class movie studio in Shalun might include the farm, Tainan Mayor William Lai (賴清德) said in October last year, without providing details.

Citizen of the Earth researcher Lee Han-lin (李翰林) on Thursday said that the roads planned for the technology park would cut across the farm, endangering the pheasants, wild rabbits and other animals that roam the farmland.

Guarding Shalun Farm, an environmentalist group of which Lee is a member, said a count in March found that 1,511 birds of more than 60 species live on the farm.

The Ministry of Science and Technology issued a statement on Sunday saying the Tainan City Government plans to widen three roads, with one passing through the west side of the farm, but added it would pose no threat to wildlife.

Two other roads are to lead to Guanmiao (關廟) in the east of the city and to Gueiren (歸仁) in the north, both far from the animals’ habitats, the ministry said.

The ministry is preparing an environmental impact study, Department of Foresight and Innovation Policies specialist Lai Yi-chen (賴怡臻) said.

However, Lee said wildlife habitats would be affected by the increased noise, dirt and traffic brought by the roads and construction.

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