Late last year Taiwan promulgated the Environmental Standards Law, which stipulates that as Taiwan pursues economic, technological, and social development, it must at the same time protect Taiwan’s environment. The Law states that where the interests of development and environmental protection collide, priority must be now be granted to the preservation of and protection of Taiwan’s natural environment, long neglected in the race to develop.

The new legislation further stipulates that all of Taiwan’s government agencies and various political sub-divisions must initiate proactive measures to control carbon dioxide emissions, and must devise strategies to prevent the so-called greenhouse effect. Moreover, The Law designates June 5th of each year “Environment Day” in the hope of inspiring the Taiwanese people to be more conscious regarding the importance of environmental protection.

The Environmental Standards Law provides that Taiwan’s environmental natural resources are property held in common by all Taiwanese people and the central government will establish a system of fines to be imposed on polluters who damage the environment. The new legislation also requires Taiwan’s Executive Yuan to create a national sustainable development committee to be comprised of government officials, scholars, and representatives of various civic groups to supervise and coordinate the new policy.

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