A. Current status
Fast economic growth and rising income levels in Taiwan have been accompanied by a rapid increase in the number of motor vehicles on the road. At the end of 2009, the number of registered motor vehicles in Taiwan totaled 21.17 million, among which 14.6 million were motorcycles and 6.77 million automobiles. The figures continue to rise by 1%-3% annually. With limited land and highly dense population, emissions from motor vehicles (hereinafter called "mobile pollution sources") are the main source of air contaminants in urban areas in Taiwan, which have a severe impact on air quality and public health.
B. Control measures
To reach the goal of reducing the total amount of emissions from mobile sources, "traffic and transportation management measures" are reinforced to curb the use of private vehicles and control the sources of air pollution.
(1) New vehicle control measures
a.Phase-in implementation of stricter vehicle emission standards
Gasoline engine vehicles: Taiwan began to implement Phase 1 emission standards for gasoline engine vehicles on 1 July 1987, which was an important step in the development of regulating vehicle emissions. Phase 4 emission standards went into effect on 1 January 2008.
Diesel engine vehicles: Phase 1 emission standards for diesel engine vehicle went into effect on 1 July 1987, and Phase 4 standards went into effect on 1 October 2006.
Motorcycles: Emission standards for motorcycles were implemented in 5 phases starting from 1 January 1988. Phase 5 standards went into effect on 1 July 2007.
b.New vehicle model inspection: A new vehicle model inspection and testing system is implemented to ensure all new models of private vehicles are in compliance with emission standards.
c.Consulting with related government agencies to look into the possibility of SUV tax hike in order to curb the growth of SUV sales.
d.Encouraging automakers to manufacture or introduce automobiles that comply with new emission standards.
(2) On-road vehicle emissions control measures
a. Routine exhaust emissions inspection and testing program: Routine inspection and testing of exhaust emissions from gasoline and diesel engine automobiles is conducted in conjunction with annual vehicle safety inspection by local departments of motor vehicles. For motorcycles, inspection is conducted at inspection stations entrusted by the EPA.
b. Motorcycles and diesel engine automobiles spot check: Spot checks and testing of exhaust emissions from motorcycles and diesel engine automobiles are conducted by local environmental protection agencies. In addition, dynamometer testing facilities for exhaust emissions from diesel engine automobiles have been installed at 33 inspection lanes in 22 cities and counties nation-wide.
c. Remote sensing of emissions from gasoline engine automobiles: An on-road remote sensing and monitoring system is used to check the exhaust emissions from gasoline engine automobiles. The system screens out individual vehicles with excessive emissions for follow-up inspection and testing.
d. Urging the public to identify and report on-road gross polluters or other high-emission vehicles: The public are encouraged to identify and report high-emitting automobiles and motorcycles.
e. Eliminating old vehicles and two-stroke engine motorcycles: In coordination with the Ministry of Transportation and Communications and the Department of Finance, the EPA proposed to raise license tax and motor vehicle fuel tax on old vehicles that are more than 10 years old in order to accelerate the elimination of old automobiles with high fuel consumption and heavy pollution.
f. Enhancing the quality of exhaust emissions inspection and testing of in-use gasoline and diesel engine automobiles.
g. Subsidizing diesel engine automobiles to install diesel particulate filters: The EPA has been advocating the installation of diesel particulate filters on garbage trucks and city buses in the three metropolises of Taipei, Taichung and Kaohsiung.
(3) Clean alternative fuel promotion measures
a. Subsidizing the price of liquefied petroleum gas (LPG): On 1 October 2001, the EPA approved a subsidy policy which offered drivers a subsidy of NT$3 per liter of LPG, to encourage the public to use LPG as an alternative fuel. The subsidy was changed to NT$2.5 per liter after 1 January 2006. Between 1 January 2007 and 31 December 2008, the subsidy will be NT$2 per liter.
b. Setting control measures of automobile gasoline and diesel fuels: The EPA has been setting more stringent standards for the sulfur content of automobile diesel fuel. The allowable sulfur content of diesel fuel was gradually reduced from 5,000 ppmw in 1989 to 10 ppmw in 2011. A 10 ppmw cap was put on gasoline fuel, effective 1 January 2012.
c. Enforcing the air pollution control fee program: A revision was made to levy air pollution control fees per liter for different grades of gasoline and diesel fuels.
d. Cracking down on illegal fuel: The "Guidelines Concerning Penalties on Modes of Transportation for Violations of Air Pollution Control Act" were revised on 8 January 2003. Diesel engine automobile drivers are subject to a maximum fine of NT$75,000 for using illegal fuel oil products.
e. Adding more LPG vehicles and LPG filling stations: The EPA has been advocating the use of LPG retrofit vehicles and adding more LPG filling stations. LPG vehicles have been included in the government's joint supply contracts for green products to encourage retrofitting of government vehicles.
f. Promoting the use of bio-diesel fuel and ethanol gasoline.
(4) Low-pollution vehicles promotion measures
a. Advocating the use of low-pollution motorcycles
b. Subsidizing the purchase of electric auxiliary bicycles: A subsidy policy was approved in 2001. A subsidy of NT$3,000 is provided for the purchase of an electric auxiliary bike, and 3,000-4,000 bikes have been subsidized annually.
c. Promoting the use of hybrid vehicles (draft): The Bureau of Energy, Ministry of Economic Affairs adopted a number of promotion measures, including cutting import tariff in half, cutting commodity tax in half, income tax deduction, fuel tax exemption, CO2 reduction incentives, and encouraging government agencies to purchase or lease hybrid vehicles for official purposes.
d. Advocating bike lanes
(5) Traffic management measures
a. Promoting the use of public transportation
b. Expanding paid motorcycle parking areas
c. Revising the traffic code to curb the growth of motor vehicles
d. Designating clean air zones that prohibit the entry of any motor vehicles
- Environmental Protection Administration, R.O.C.(Taiwan)