Greenpeace urges Taiwan to adopt a minimum carbon price of US$35 per tonne

04/20/2021 09:56 PM
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Photo courtesy of Greenpeace
Photo courtesy of Greenpeace

Taipei, April 20 (CNA) Greenpeace on Tuesday urged Taiwan's Environmental Protection Administration (EPA) to include the goal of carbon neutrality by 2050 and introduce a minimum carbon price of US$35 per metric ton, as part of the agency's proposed revision of the Greenhouse Gas Reduction and Management Act.

At a press conference held in front of EPA headquarters in Taipei, Greenpeace erected a large installation to demonstrate that a carbon price of US$4 per metric ton, previously reported by local media, was far lower than the US$33 in South Korea, US$68 in Finland and US$50-US$100 recommended by the World Bank.

Establishing a pricing level of US$4 per metric ton will absolutely not help to reduce carbon dioxide emissions in Taiwan, Greenpeace project director Cheng Chu-hsin (鄭楚忻) said, arguing that anything lower than US$35 per metric ton will not work.

The EPA needs to be more aggressive in responding to the international community's moves to cut carbon emissions, Greenpeace said in a statement, in which it accused the agency of being reluctant to introduce a "more powerful" and "specific" carbon pricing policy.

More than 110 countries have signed onto the global coalition for carbon neutrality by 2050, including the United States after its formal return to the Paris Agreement early this year.

U.S. President Joe Biden will host a virtual summit with 40 leaders around the world on April 22-23, demonstrating the urgency of adopting more efficient climate strategies, Cheng said.

"For Taiwan to join the global coalition, it must promise to achieve the global goal of carbon neutrality by 2050, and set up an efficient carbon pricing policy" as it moves to amend the nation's Greenhouse Gas Reduction and Management Act, Cheng said.

Whether or not to introduce a carbon pricing system that will help Taiwan achieve carbon neutrality should be the key point of the amendment, according to Greenpeace.

Late last year, the EPA proposed amendments to the greenhouse gas act promulgated in 2015, but did not change the goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions to 50 percent of 2005 levels by 2050, other than renaming the act the "Climate Change Act."

In draft revisions, the EPA has added the words "setting net zero emissions as a goal to strive towards," while proposing to regulate carbon pricing with separate regulations.

In response, EPA official Wen Yu-yung (溫育勇) said only that the amendment to the act is currently under consideration and the agency will continue to collect opinions from all walks of life before a final draft is submitted.

(By Chang Hsiung-feng and Elizabeth Hsu)

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