It tops the list of the nation's most instantly recognizable songs, but starting next month Mariden's Prayer will have company.
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has signed up Any Empty Bottles for Sale? (
In addition, a rock version of the 20-year-old local favorite, arranged by Harlem Yu (庾澄慶), will be played at hundreds of fast-food chain stores across the country starting from next Tuesday.
The two artists agreed to allow the EPA to use their work for free.
"It's my pleasure to do so," Hou said yesterday at a press conference organized by the EPA. "The level of civilization in a country can partly be judged by reviewing its achievements in environmental protection."
In 1983, Hou married a segment of a Taiwanese slogan commonly used by recycling service peddlers to a major pentatonic scale, the basic scale of Chinese music. The song turned out to be one of Hou's best-loved pieces. Over the past two decades, the song has been translated into a number of different languages, including French and Japanese.
EPA Administrator Hau Lung-bin (
Hau said the rock arrangement will be played at 600 fast-food chain stores, where more trash cans will be installed for customers to recycle leftovers and paper containers.
Hau said the 400 million customers visiting fast-food chain stores annually were the target of the EPA's environmental education program.
"The six-month trial will be an ideal model of the cooperation between the government, the industry and the public to practice recycling on a daily basis," Hau said.
Hau said the recycling push is part of a follow-up to the EPA's policy of limiting the use of plastic bags and disposable dinning tableware.
Beginning Jan. 1 next year, officials said, the trial will become a compulsory regulation for all fast-food chain stores.
According to Chen Hsiung-wen (
"Paper tableware will be sent to paper factories for pulping and leftovers will be used to produce fertilizers or pig feed," Chen said.
Officials said yesterday that this year the EPA is aiming to increase low recycling rates of used batteries, fluorescent lamps and paper tableware.
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