Enhancing Public Awareness

President Signs Declaration on Energy Conservation and Carbon Reduction

On World Environment Day on June 5, President Ma Ying-jeou signed the Ten-Step Presidential Declaration on Energy Conservation and Carbon Reduction. Example actions include encouraging employees to wear simple, lightweight work attire, turning off lights and unplugging appliances. It is hoped that citizens can put these actions into practice in their everyday lives.

For this year's World Environment Day, President Ma put forward an energy conservation and carbon reduction declaration for all of his colleagues at the Office of the President to sign. President Ma and Vice President Vincent Siew attended the ceremony.

The Ten-Step Presidential Declaration on Energy Conservation and Carbon Reduction entails actions such as wearing simple lightweight attire, opening windows to cool off, turning off lights, unplugging appliances, driving less, walking more, buying local products, eating only as much as you can finish, refusing to buy over-packaged products, recycling, reusing, and carrying one’s own cup, bowl, chopsticks, handkerchief, and shopping bag.

President Ma said that by strongly promoting energy saving and carbon-reduction practices at the Office of the President, these habits are more likely to spread to the people. While it is not easy for everyone to adopt energy saving practices, taking it one step at a time will improve the environment. The Office of the President launched the 123 Energy Conservation and Carbon Reduction Plan with targets to save 10% of electricity, 20% of water and 30% of paper. In the future, employees of the Office of the President have agreed to turn off all the lights during breaks or after work, set the air conditioner at 26 degrees Celsius, and not wear suits to informal meetings. The Office of the President has also set up rainwater harvesting system and a water recycling and purification system.


Sector Carbon Reductions

The EPA announced the guidelines for a low carbon lifestyle on August 22, 2008, in order to achieve the objective of creating a low carbon society and sustainable homeland.

The guidelines contain four main themes: energy conservation and carbon reduction for a cool earth, resource recycling and zero waste, pollution reduction and environmental conservation for sound ecology, and clean homeland with life styles of health and sustainability (LOHAS). To be in line with these themes, the EPA has also taken the following actions:

  1. Nationwide carbon reduction campaign:
    The EPA initiated in June 2008, the Citizens’ No Regret Carbon Reduction Action Plan and encouraged government agencies to lead the private sector in fulfilling the Ten Carbon Reduction Declarations, including reduce usage of air conditioners, purchase energy and water saving labeled products, and reduce car use through biking and walking, etc.
  2. Carbon reduction information sharing through Internet:
    The EPA has established an energy conservation and carbon reduction action website, and invited the private sector and citizens to sign on to the Ten Carbon Reduction Declarations. Participants of the carbon reduction activities may calculate the individual carbon reduction performance on the web-based calculation tool to track the progress, as well as sharing the most effective implementation experiences on the blogs associated with the website.
  3. Environmental education for the children:
    Nationwide poster contests were held to encourage elementary school students to express their concerns for the environment and the Earth through their creative drawings.
  4. Creative thinking in carbon reduction actions:
    Carbon reduction promotion design contest was held to increase the citizens’ awareness of carbon reduction. Winners of the contest have agreed to adopt the Creative Commons copyright licensing process with author acknowledgement for noncommercial purpose. The winning designs will be used on the EasyCard for transit services to spread the carbon reduction message further.
  5. Tips for carbon reduction through daily lives:
    The EPA has published the booklet “Citizens’ Carbon Reduction: Tips for Daily Lives,” which provides energy saving tips for families and individuals all done in easy-to-understand comics style. The booklets are provided to EPA offices and local environmental protection bureaus for distribution to civil organizations, and over 60,000 copies of the booklets have already been distributed.
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  6. Carbon reduction on college campuses:
    Through cooperation with the National Central University, the EPA conducted a cost and benefit evaluation of college campus buildings’ energy saving and greenhouse gas emission reduction potentials. The results have been incorporated into a campus building carbon reduction case study report which is then used as benchmark for inventory and improvement of college energy consumption.

  7. Campus environmental education:
    In 2007, the EPA acquired the rights for public showing of the movie “An Inconvenient Truth” presented by former US President Al Gore. It was exhibited in selected schools and communities during March to October, 2007. The EPA also purchased 209 Collector’s Edition sets of the movie and donated them to junior high schools in remote areas for use in their environmental awareness courses.

  8. Low-carbon families:
    The EPA has sponsored the Low-carbon Family Summer Camps for third to sixth graders, in order to teach elementary school students how to reduce carbon emissions through daily actions. After the summer camps, carbon reduction family contests were held to let camp participants practice and compete in energy saving tips learned.

  9. World Environment Day activities:
    On June 5, 2007, the EPA joined the National Geographic magazine in providing free booklets with 24 tips on carbon reduction through magazine distribution of the June 2007 Issue. On June 5, 2008, the EPA sponsored outdoor showing of the movie Arctic Tale at Taipei’ s Da-an Forest Park, which also accompanied exhibition of information and tips on energy savings.

  10. Carbon Reduction Information Pavilion:
    The EPA has cooperated with the Taipei Computer Association for five consecutive years in setting up carbon reduction information pavilion during the annual Information Technology Month exhibitions. The Pavilion integrated the promotional efforts of several eco-labeling programs, including Energy Star, Green Mark, Energy Label and Water-Saving Label, in providing information on energy and resource conservation efforts, and teaching citizens how to reduce carbon emissions through lifestyle changes.

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