All seven mosquito coils made by the Crocodile Coil brand tested by the Environmental Protection Administration (EPA) contained dioxin levels more than 100 times the industrial norm, the EPA said at a press conference yesterday.
As the products pose a possible health risk, people should avoid buying Crocodile Coil products until the matter is resolved, the EPA said.
In addition to recalling all its products, Crocodile Coil said it would offer refunds to customers, EPA Deputy Minister Chang Tzi-chin (張子敬) said.
The EPA’s investigation of dioxin levels in all the mosquito coils on the market came after the administration’s unexpected finding during a random inspection on July 25 that two Crocodile Coil brand products — Vietnam-made Crocodile Dye-free Coil (product No. 0661) and Crocodile Light (product No. 0670) — contained 423 and 348 picograms of international toxic equivalent per gram (pg I-TEQ/g) of dioxin respectively.
Dioxins are listed by the WHO as carcinogens. If exposed to burning coils in closed environments for two or three months, a person’s risk of developing cancer could increase 3.7-fold, said director-general of the Department of Environmental Sanitation and Toxic Substances Yuan Shao-ying (袁紹英).
After receiving the test results last month, the EPA demanded that Crocodile Coil withdraw the two products and two other Vietnam-made coils from the market and said it would test all mosquito coils sold in Taiwan.
“After testing 20 products, we found that seven contained dioxin levels ranging from 163 to 624 pg I-TEQ/g, while the levels in the other 13 were 0 to 4 pg I-TEQ/g. All seven contaminated products were from the Crocodile Coil brand,” Chang said.
Although the contamination is believed to have originated from wood powders Crocodile Coil purchased from a Vietnamese firm — which it then distributed to its plants in Vietnam, Indonesia, China and Malaysia — Chang said the EPA had nevertheless demanded that Crocodile Coil launch an investigation to determine the source.
People who have been using the coils should not be overly worried, however, Yuan said.
“If a person has used the coils according to the instructions on the package ... the chances of inhaling excess dioxins are low,” Yuan said.
THE CHINA CONNECTION: As Beijing’s aggression increases, so does Taiwanese consciousness, making a new constitution imperative, Hsu Wei-chun said If the nation is to ratify a new constitution, it must first end any illusions about the current document’s relevance to Taiwan, an academic told a forum in Taipei yesterday. For the constitutional revisionist movement to succeed, it needs public enthusiasm, the right timing and a clear plan of action, Chung Yuan Christian University associate professor Hsu Wei-chun (徐偉群) told attendees at the event titled “Imagining a New Constitution for a New Era,” which was organized by the National Taiwan University Graduate Student Association. The Constitution exists under the “one China” framework and has little relevance to Taiwan, Hsu said, adding that
IDENTITY: The time is right to press on with a referendum, as the nation has heightened visibility and support in the global community, the Taiwan United Nations Alliance said The Taiwan United Nations Alliance yesterday said that it is considering launching a petition for a referendum proposal to have the nation join the UN under the name “Taiwan.” Alliance chairman Twu Shiing-jer (涂醒哲) was joined at a news conference in Taipei by Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Legislator Huang Hsiu-fang (黃秀芳) and leaders of the Presbyterian Church in Taiwan and civic organizations. They said that it is the right time for a petition because Taiwan’s visibility on the world stage has increased, as it has been praised for its success in containing its COVID-19 outbreak and for helping other countries by sharing
Former president Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) yesterday urged Beijing to respect the median line of the Taiwan Strait by immediately stopping its military intimidation of Taiwan, as such actions would only hurt the feelings of Taiwanese. Beijing should immediately stop making military provocations against Taiwan, Ma wrote on Facebook after Chinese warplanes in the past week have made numerous forays across the median line that divides the Taiwan Strait. Although it has never officially acknowledged the median line, Beijing used to respect it, Ma said in response to comments on Monday by Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokesman Wang Wenbin (汪文斌), who said
An advertisement displayed in the corridor of the underground Taipei City Mall has caused contention online with social media users saying that it depicts Taiwanese bears as servants of Chinese pandas. The advertisement — which imitates the style of an ancient Chinese painting, but replaces people with bears — shows a scene in imperial China, with Formosan black bears laboring, while pandas relax and enjoy beverages. “The development of the tourism industry is important, but this type of targeted advertising is extremely disrespectful — and it makes people uncomfortable,” Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Taipei City Councilor Chen E-jun (陳怡君) said. The advertisement, under