Taiwan observes Earth Hour
Several of Taiwan’s major landmarks, including the Presidential Office Building and Taipei 101, joined cities around the globe to observe Earth Hour by turning off their lights from 8:30pm to 9:30pm yesterday. The observance of Earth Hour in Taiwan last year saved about 120,000 kilowatt-hours of electricity, the equivalent of 60 metric tonnes of carbon dioxide, which equates to planting nearly 5,800 trees, Taiwan Power Co said in a press release. A total of 900,000kWh of electricity has been saved since Taiwan began observing Earth Hour in 2010, it added. The annual global event encourages individuals, communities and businesses to turn off non-essential lights for one hour as a symbol of their commitment to help the planet.
Temperatures to rise
With easterly winds bringing warm air, temperatures in central and southern Taiwan were as high as 32°C yesterday, the Central Weather Bureau said. Daniel Wu (吳德榮), a former director of the bureau’s Weather Forecast Center who is now an adjunct associate professor of atmospheric sciences at National Central University, said that temperatures across Taiwan are expected to rise further over the next few days. Wu said that a front is expected to arrive in Taiwan on Sunday next week, but it could be mild, so temperatures would only drop slightly. The weather system is also unlikely to bring heavy rains, he added. Meanwhile, due to a lack of wind, air quality in west Taiwan was poor yesterday, the Environmental Protection Administration said. Air quality could deteriorate early this morning, triggering a “red” alert — which signals unhealthy air quality — in some parts of Yunlin, Chiayi and Tainan counties, it said.
Green Line ‘improved’
People in Taichung have expressed satisfaction with the city’s new MRT Green Line, which resumed trial runs on Thursday after a four-month suspension due to mechanical problems. Some passengers said that the stability of the ride has improved, and the overall service is better than when the first trial runs were launched in November last year. The Green Line, the first line on Taichung’s MRT system to be completed, was forced to halt its initial test run six days after it began on Nov. 16 last year. The city government said that couplings between the cars had not been assembled properly. A new date, April 25, has now been set for the start of commercial services, and free rides are being offered from 6am to midnight daily until April 23, the city government said.
Flight offers views of Japan
EVA Airways conducted a one-off flight over Japan yesterday, offering passengers a view of Emihe Prefecture in partnership with the local government, the carrier said. Before the flight departed Taipei International Airport (Songshan airport), the prefecture’s mascot, Mikyan, performed at a ceremony to welcome the 180 passengers before they boarded an Airbus A321-200 for the five-hour round trip. Passengers viewed Japan’s southern island of Kyushu, including several volcanoes, such as Mount Aso and Sakurajima, before flying over Emihe on Shikoku Island, EVA Airways spokesman David Chen (陳耀銘) said. They saw the bridges that connect Shikoku and Honshu islands, as well as Matsuyama Castle, he said. The tour also included a view of the Itsukushima Shrine, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, EVA said. It was EVA’s second such flight over Japan.
‘LOW PROBABILITY’: China still ‘has a ways to go to develop the actual, no-kidding capability’ to seize Taiwan militarily, US General Mark Milley said The US’ top general on Thursday downplayed concern that China would attempt a military takeover of Taiwan in the near term, saying Beijing does not have the capability to do so. While there has been rising concern in Taiwan and among US lawmakers about Chinese military activity near Taiwan, such as flying jets in Taiwan’s air defense identification zone (ADIZ), US military officials said that such moves are not overly concerning. US Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff General Mark Milley told lawmakers that while Taiwan was still a core national interest of China, “there’s little intent right now, or motivation,
A Kaohsiung woman who thought that she was dating Hollywood actor Keanu Reeves was found not guilty of abetting fraud, the Kaohsiung District Court has ruled. Citing insufficient evidence to prove intent, the court on May 27 dismissed fraud and money-laundering charges against the woman, surnamed Chang (張), saying that the evidence suggested that she had been duped. The verdict can be appealed. The verdict said that police opened an investigation into Chang after her bank account was linked to an online catfishing scheme, which involves luring someone into a relationship by using a fictional online persona. The scheme claimed two victims, including a
The Canadian House of Commons on Thursday unanimously passed the first reading of a proposal to create a legal framework for efforts to strengthen relations with Taiwan. The Canada-Taiwan Relations Framework Act was introduced by Canadian Member of Parliament Michael Cooper, who said that not having a formal diplomatic relationship with Taiwan has complicated interactions between the two nations. Taiwan is one of Canada’s largest trading partners, and the two share strong people-to-people links and common values, he said. Taiwan “is a vibrant economy and one of the world’s top 20 economies. It is time Canada’s relations with Taiwan reflect
Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) lawmakers yesterday condemned Chinese Nationalist Party’s (KMT) Institute of Revolutionary Practice director Lo Chih-chiang (羅智強) for calling the government a “vaccine beggar” for receiving a donation of COVID-19 vaccines from the US. “Lo is still living in feudal China,” DPP Legislator Kuan Bi-ling (管碧玲) told a news conference. “When Taiwan needs unity, he uses malicious words to malign our president’s character and Taiwan’s national integrity. This person is either evil or he is completely ignorant,” she said. Taiwan donated 2 million masks to the US, and provided 2 million masks and 50,000 protective gowns to Japan when they