Tue, Jun 05, 2018 - Page 3 News List

European Innovation Week launches with green event

By Lin Chia-nan  /  Staff reporter

More Taiwanese businesses are turning waste into reusable resources and their techniques do not lag behind those of their European counterparts, Environmental Protection Administration (EPA) Minister Lee Ying-yuan (李應元) said yesterday as the EU-Taiwan Circular Economy Conference’s opened in Taipei.

The conference is one of the events held during the European Innovation Week, which started yesterday at the Taipei International Convention Center and ends on Friday.

The EPA in February set a timetable to ban single-use plastic products by 2030 and it plans to ban the use of plastic straws at local restaurants from next year, he said.

Industrial alliances for the reuse of plastic waste, electronic and construction resources have been established successively, he said, adding that he expects the nation to achieve its “zero waste” target by 2050.

Steven Ko (葛望平), founder of haircare product maker O’right (歐萊德), said his company prides itself on its fully biodegradable shampoo bottles, and its bottle pressers, which are made from recycled materials.

The shampoo bottles also contain plant seeds at the bottom, meaning that they might grow into trees if buried in the soil, he said.

The company has also developed a new technique to make shampoo bottles from coffee grounds, he said.

In addition to developing healthier products, the company also asks itself: “What products would the river want?” Ko said, adding that it strives to design cradle-to-cradle products.

Textile maker Far Eastern New Century (遠東新世紀), which uses marine waste to produce sports shoes, and Chen Ya Resources Technology Corp (成亞資源科技), which transforms waste silicon mud into metallic silicon for steelmakers, showcased their products on the sidelines of the event.

EPA officials are tomorrow to take European representatives to Tainan to inspect the city’s refuse incineration plant and Solar Applied Materials Technology Corp (光洋應用材料科技).

The operations are “brilliant examples” of the nation’s circular economy, the EPA said.

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