Kaohsiung, Dec. 14 (CNA) The government launched Sunday the second phase of a solar power system on Taiping Island, as part of efforts to transform the largest Taiwan-controlled island in the contested South China Sea into a low-carbon island.
The second-phase 40-kilowatt-peak (kWp) solar power system, built with a 612-kWp solar power storage facility, will generate an estimated 50,527 kilowatt hours of electricity per year, said Nieh Chia-hsin, deputy director-general of the Coast Guard Administration's (CGA's) Coastal Patrol Directorate General.
Combining the first-phase construction that was launched in December 2011, the entire solar power system will generate an estimated 189,492 kilowatt hours of electricity per year and save 49,003 liters of diesel fuel annually, Nieh said at an inauguration ceremony on the island.
That will mean a reduction of 127.9 tons of carbon emissions from diesel generators per year, thanks to the increasing adoption of renewable energy, he added.
Funded by the Ministry of Economic Affairs, the CGA began the second-phase construction of the solar power system earlier this year in cooperation with Tatung Co., a leading Taiwanese home appliance maker.
Building Taiping into a "low-carbon island" was an idea promoted by President Ma Ying-jeou in a South China Sea policy meeting in November 2010. The initiative aims to cement Taiwan's sovereignty over the area by focusing on scientific research and environmental protection.
China, Vietnam, Malaysia, Brunei and the Philippines also claim all or part of the Spratly archipelago, which is located some 1,600 kilometers southwest of Kaohsiung. Taiping is the largest island in the group.
(By Cheng Chi-feng and Jeffrey Wu)ENDITEM/J