President Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) said yesterday the government is aiming to pursue diversity in the nation’s energy supply during an inspection visit to the Chang-Kong Wind Power Station in Changhua County.
During the visit, Ma reiterated his administration’s support for wind energy amid the ongoing dispute over the construction of the Fourth Nuclear Power Plant in New Taipei City’s (新北市) Gongliao Dictrict (貢寮).
Accompanied by Minister of Economic Affairs Chang Chia-juch (張家祝) and Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) lawmakers, Ma visited the wind power station and discussed wind energy with business groups at a forum.
The visit was originally scheduled for the day of the fifth anniversary of Ma’s inauguration on May 20, but was delayed due to heavy rain.
Ma said building a nuclear-free homeland is a goal of the Basic Environment Act (環境基本法), and has promised to achieve this goal while keeping electricity prices at an acceptable level and not disrupting power supplies.
As part of reducing the nation’s dependence on nuclear power, Ma said the government is to put greater emphasis on the development of renewable sources of energy, including wind power and solar power.
“Renewable energy has its limitations and the government cannot put all its eggs in the same basket. We must develop different sources of energy, otherwise an energy crisis could result in a serious national security issue,” he said.
Karl-Eugen Feifel, chairman of InfraVest Wind Power, the largest investor in wind power in Taiwan, took the occasion to promote the development of wind power in the nation, and challenged the Ma administration to allow private energy companies to sell electricity directly to consumers as an incentive to attract more private investment.
He complained that the Taiwan Power Company (Taipower) had refused to allow his company to sell its energy to Google Inc, which has established factories in Changbin Industrial Zone, and said the Ma administration should abandon the view that renewable energy can only provide auxiliary supplies of electricity.
Ma said the government pays great attention to the development of wind power, but it cannot ignore opposition from local residents, who are concerned about noise and other impacts from the power station.
“As with all sources of energy, wind power has its advantages and limitations,” Ma said.
“We need different sources of energy regardless of whether the construction of the Fourth Nuclear Power Plant is completed. Therefore, the government will focus more efforts on the development of renewable energies,” he added.
GREATER NUMBER: The sorties might have been a response to the US and the EU expressing concern on Friday over China’s ‘provocations’ in the Taiwan Strait Twenty-five Chinese military aircraft and four naval ships were detected around Taiwan from 6am Saturday to 6am yesterday, including eight airplanes that had crossed the median line of the Taiwan Strait and another two that entered Taiwan’s air defense identification zone (ADIZ). The People’s Liberation Army (PLA) aircraft that entered Taiwan’s southwestern ADIZ were a Y-8 anti-submarine plane and a BZK-005 uncrewed aerial vehicle, the Ministry of National Defense said. The aircraft that flew across the median line include two Sukhoi Su-30 fighter jets, four J-16 multipurpose fighters and two J-10 jets, the ministry’s official Web site showed. Taiwan’s armed forces monitored the
Mask easing: Teachers are allowed to take their masks off while lecturing indoors, but students should keep theirs on, as COVID-19 measures ease this week The Ministry of Education (MOE) yesterday released new on-campus COVID-19 prevention guidelines, stating that masks can be taken off while exercising, singing, dancing, performing, taking photographs, dining, drinking, video and voice recording, hosting events, presenting speeches and lecturing outdoors. Large outdoor events organized by schools should comply with the mask regulations issued by the Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC), it added. The new guidelines came into effect yesterday, and people in Taiwan are no longer required to wear masks outdoors for the first time since May 19 last year. The CECC announced the easing of the mask mandate on Monday, adding that it
LUNAR NEW YEAR PEAK: Taiwanese who are in China should get vaccinated and consider returning early, as infection rates are expected to increase, the CECC said China faces five major problems once COVID-19 begins spreading there, with a peak in infections likely during the Lunar New Year holidays, Deputy Minister of Health and Welfare Victor Wang (王必勝), who heads the Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC), said yesterday. Wang wrote on Facebook that according to the center’s data, the increasing number of COVID-19 cases in China is worth noting, as the new Omicron subvariants BF.7 and BA.5.2 spreading in China are highly infectious and are more transmissible than the previously dominating Omicron subvariants. “The virus cannot be eliminated even under China’s strict control measures,” he wrote. “Its policy
‘SEXUAL ASSAULT’: Taipei prosecutors said that cooperation agreements between Taiwan and the Czech Republic grant Czech officials protection against prosecution The Taipei District Prosecutors’ Office yesterday reaffirmed that it would not charge a Czech official with sexual assault because he is protected by diplomatic immunity. The office released a statement saying it has verified that the man works for the Czech Economic and Cultural Office Taipei’s foreign affairs corps and is thereby protected from criminal prosecution. A foreign graduate student in Taiwan had filed a complaint alleging that the section head of the Czech Economic and Trade Section had sexually assaulted her on April 21 last year. The woman said the Czech official had invited her to his home and then forced her