Help citizens in Taiwan develop the concept of environmental ethics and the consensus of public participation in environmental protection to call for public environmental protection action.
B. Taiwan’s Four Pathways of Environmental Education
The standard environmental education curriculum includes students from preschool to primary school to university, as well as teachers. To improve environmental protection knowledge and environmental literacy among preschool and primary school students, teenagers and youth, the existing standard education curriculum is coordinated to promote a variety of EE activities for all ages, teacher training, and teaching material design. This helps them develop awareness of their surroundings starting from childhood, as they learn to respect and protect the environment. It is expected this will create the foundation for cultivating a more environmentally friendly community.
Ways to promote EE
Exploring the environment, theater performances, and reading picture books
Elementary or junior high school;
Senior high school
Surveying the environment, reading picture books, and playing board games;
Theater performances, mapping, competitions;
Hands-on practicing on campus, experience at camps, and learning outdoors
General education, camp learning, empowerment training, youth initiatives, and environmental activism
Social groups, such as governments, communities, enterprises and media, are brought together in non-standard education to promote EE and raise the public’s environmental awareness in order to achieve a sustainable society.
To implement EE policies, Taiwan’s EPA has established the NEEA (National Environmental Education Abstract), which operates nationally, and NEEAP (National Environmental Education Action Plan), which is led by local governments, under the TEEA. These plans provide work guidelines for all government departments. The department agencies and schools are urged to promote their own responsibilities with respect to environmental sustainability. Meanwhile, interdepartmental communication and coordination as well as resource integration will lead to greater ubiquity of EE.
The government employs a variety of policy tools, such as legislation, personnel utilization and training, funding, professional certification, access to educational resources and information, penalties, evaluation, guidance and rewards. These tools serve to promote EE at different levels in society and boost its impact.
TEEA’s primary promotion targets are governments, state-owned enterprises, employees, teachers, and students of primary and secondary educational institutions. Therefore, people in the abovementioned groups, even including the President of Taiwan, are required to participate in at least four hours of EE per year to improve their environmental awareness and to strengthen their environmental ethics.
Community is the base unit of governance. The EPA started promoting “The Community Environmental Transformation Project” in 1997. The project should be led by residents in the community to identify environmental issues and propose solutions. Environmental transformation that begins in the community will help raise environmental awareness among the general public and promote EE gradually.
Since 2009 “The Environmental Protection Classroom Program” has been helping residents learn about the environmental characteristics of their communities, local cultures, and sustainable living practices. Meanwhile, communities are given assistance and encouraged to transform into EE participants. By identifying unique environmental resources and cultures, local experts and their communities are expected to provide EE services.
Environmental volunteers are the soul and drivers of EE in the community. Since 1991 the EPA has brought together various human resources in society and collaborated with local environmental protection authorities to construct an environmental volunteer system. Volunteers are selected and trained to provide assistance in environmental protection and education/promotion in different fields.
Corporate social responsibility (CSR) is an international trend and indicator of corporate sustainability within enterprises today. This means that in addition to the pursuit of profit, enterprises must also pay attention to the interests of all stakeholders. "Environmental protection" is one of the corporate responsibilities to be fulfilled by companies.
For the purpose of urging enterprises to pay attention to sustainability and take initiative to promote environmental protection efforts, since 1991 the EPA has been holding the “Enterprise Environmental Protection Award” (renamed the “National Enterprise Environmental Protection Award” in 2019). Corporations are encouraged to implement environmental practices and to improve the quality of life, through environmental policies, pollution prevention, resource conservation and participation in environmental protection. This is the highest honor in environmental protection for enterprises in Taiwan.
Private sector enterprises were included as one of the categories at the EPA’s “National Environmental Education Awards” in 2012. These awards are intended to entice businesses to share their resources to engage the community and develop different partnerships. They also encourage enterprises to participate in EE certification and invest in EE services so as to increase their positive social influence by acting as environmentally friendly enterprises. In production processes, environmental labels and green consumption should be considered. The transformation of corporate governance and reinforcement of EE among enterprises is expected to lead a green culture.
C. Media Campaign
The Department continues working with the broadcasting media to produce environmental protection programs and the print media to report environmental protection messages, broadcasts environmental films on TV channels, and make use of public TV, outdoor electronic media, and publications to campaign environmental protection policies and promote public education. These measures effectively construct dual communication channels between the EPA and the public that helps to convey policy intentions and gain public supports, educate the public environmental protection knowledge and concept, and announce the coming up environmental education activities. To ensure the nationwide acceptance of environmental protection knowledge and concepts, the Department publishes environmental protection books, literature, posters, pamphlets, and CDs to convey new environmental knowledge in wider scope and to increase the effectiveness of the campaign.
- Environmental Protection Administration, R.O.C.(Taiwan)