The EPA and the Ministry of Economic Affairs (MOEA) have been working together to reduce air pollution from state-run industries since 2015. Measures include urging coal-fired power plants to use less coal and more natural gas, installing wet electrostatic precipitators (WESPs) on existing coal-fired generating units, improving coal pulverizers and catalytic reduction equipment, and phasing out flue-gas desulfurization (FGD) facilities. Compared with the total air pollutants emitted by state-run industries in 2016, the emission level in 2018 was 18.2% lower. All programs to ameliorate state-run industries’ air pollution are now activated and will be completed between 2020 and 2024, which is estimated to reduce total air pollution by 49.2%.
The EPA said that under its joint efforts with the MOEA, state-run industries have seen reduction of their air pollution. Compared with emissions in 2016, reductions of Taichung Power Plant’s emissions reached 24.2% in 2018 and are expected to reach 71.3% when all improvement programs are completed in 2024. As the plant follows steps to decrease the use of coal and increase that of natural gas, the four existing coal-fired generating units will be used only as backup in the future, and the total air pollutant emissions are estimated to go down by 78% once the two units using natural gas begin operation in 2025.
For Hsinta Power Plant, emissions were down by 25.2% and are expected to reach 34% when all improvement programs are completed in 2021. With less use of coal and more of natural gas, and by also assigning coal-fired generating units as backup, air pollutant emissions in 2028 are estimated to see a 90% reduction. After seeing reduction by 14.8% in 2018, China Steel Corp. (CSC) expects to reach for drilling in manufacturing printed circuit boards into raw materials for phenolic molding powder. Other commended businesses were those handling waste plastic for common reuse, such as Horng En Plastics (two-star), Fang Tai Plastics (two-star), and Hong Sheng Environmental Technology (one-star). They were chosen for efforts to improve renewable resource quality by setting their own quality control lab, getting verified by a third party, or becoming certified home and abroad. Their performances on localizing manufacturing, research and development of technology, and opening new channels for renewable products earned high praise from evaluation members.
The EPA expressed its hope that businesses will continue to properly collect, utilize and reuse wastes generated from the industrial manufacturing process via systematic planning and design. As circular economy and enhancement of resource utilization efficiency is a global trend, all should aim for sustainable and circular use of resources by gradually elevating circular economy values, collaborating among different industries, and sharing environmental resources.
Excerpt from Environmental Policy Monthly, 23 (1)
- Environmental Protection Administration, R.O.C.(Taiwan)