On Jan. 23, Google announced that it would purchase the output of a 10 megawatt solar array in southern Taiwan — the company’s first renewable energy deal in Asia. The company should be congratulated for moving toward its mission to use 100 percent renewable energy in Taiwan and help with turning the nation into an example for the Asian renewable energy market.
By purchasing renewable energy, enterprises can help meet greenhouse-gas reduction goals and lower the risks posed by conventional power price fluctuations.
Internationally, enterprises mainly buy renewable energy through power purchase agreements bundled with certificates or by directly buying renewable energy certificates (REC) to fulfill their commitment to run their businesses on renewable energy.
A 2017 amendment to the Electricity Act (電業法) added the terms “renewable energy-based electricity generating enterprises” and “green energy-based electricity retailing enterprises,” opening “direct supply” and “wheeling” of green power, which permitted non-utility companies to directly buy renewable energy via green energy-based electricity retailers.
In October of the same year, the Bureau of Standards, Metrology and Inspection, part of the Ministry of Economic Affairs, promulgated the Implementation Regulations Governing Voluntary Renewable Energy Certificates (自願性再生能源憑證實施辦法) to build an REC system in Taiwan.
Local enterprises can obtain renewable energy certificates through free trade in green power via these channels so that they can fulfill their commitments or meet demands made during environmental impact assessments.
The certificates, known as Taiwan-RECs, are applicable to greenhouse gas inventories, the Carbon Disclosure Project, and domestic and international corporate social responsibility reports, such as the one conducted annually by Global Views Monthly.
An analysis of information about the participants in local renewable energy certificate trading and the past green power purchase mechanism shows that demand for renewable energy is highest in the computer and telecommunications industries, electronics manufacturing, and the financial and insurance sectors.
Take Apple’s information and telecommunications supply chain for example: Guided by its commitment to gradually switch to 100 percent renewable energy, all the businesses in its supply chain might feel pressure to use green energy.
Due to a trend in international finance toward socially responsible or sustainable investments, the financial and insurance sectors have also started to increase the percentage of renewable energy they use to build a positive image. These sectors are all potential clients that might take part in domestic voluntary renewable energy trading.
Google’s proposed renewable energy purchase in Taiwan represents recognition not only of the nation’s renewable energy use, but also of the government’s green power policy and trade system. In addition to Google, Facebook’s data center in Singapore also plans to power its operations with 100 percent renewable energy.
Taiwan’s experience in developing a local renewable energy trade system could serve as a reference for other Asian countries.
As the world moves toward more renewable energy use, a renewable energy market has taken shape in Taiwan. Are local enterprises ready to follow this new trend?
Chen Yen-haw is the deputy director of Research Division 1 at the Taiwan Institute of Economic Research.
Translated by Eddy Chang
An outrageous dismissal of the exemplary Taiwanese fight against COVID-19 has been perpetrated by the EU. There is no excuse. I presume that everyone who reads the Taipei Times knows that the EU has excluded Taiwan from its so-called “safe list,” which permits citizens unhindered travel to and from the countries of the EU. As the EU does not feel that it needs to explain the character of this exclusive list, perhaps we should examine it ourselves in some detail. There are 14 nations on the list that have been chosen as safe countries of origin and safe countries of destination for
Filmmakers in Taiwan used to struggle when it came to telling a story that could resonate internationally. Things started to change when the 2017 drama series The Teenage Psychic (通靈少女), a collaboration between HBO Asia and Taiwanese Public Television Service (PTS), became a huge hit not just locally, but also internationally. The coming-of-age story was adapted from the 2013 PTS-produced short film The Busy Young Psychic (神算). Entirely filmed in Taiwan, the Mandarin-language series even made it on HBO’s streaming platforms in the US. It is proof that a well-told Taiwanese story can absolutely win the hearts and minds of hard-to-please
Drugged with sedatives, handcuffed and wearing a bright orange prison tunic, British fraud investigator and former journalist Peter Humphrey was escorted by warders into an interrogation room filled with reporters, locked inside a steel cage and fastened to a metal “tiger chair.” Humphrey recalls: “I was completely surrounded by officers, dazed, manacled and with cameras pointing at me through the bars. I was fighting for my life like a caged animal. It was horrifying.” Footage from the interrogation was later artfully edited to give the appearance of a confession and broadcast on Chinese state media. While this might sound like an
The US House of Representatives on July 1 passed by unanimous consent a bipartisan bill that would penalize Chinese officials who implement Beijing’s new national security legislation in Hong Kong, as well as banks that do business with them. The following day, the US Senate unanimously passed the bill, which was later sent to the White House, where it awaits US President Donald Trump’s signature. The bill does not spell out what the sanctions would look like and Trump has yet to sign it into law, but Reuters on Thursday last week reported that five major Chinese state lenders are considering