ECCT's LCI and Taoyuan City Government host Renewable Energy Festival
ECCT’s LCI and Taoyuan City Government host Renewable Energy Festival
The European Chamber of Commerce Taiwan’s (ECCT) Low Carbon Initiative (LCI) today hosted the 2019 Renewable Energy Festival in collaboration with the Taoyuan City Government. The event, held at the Taoyuan Agricultural Park, was part of the 2019 Taoyuan Agricultural Expo, which has been recognized by Ministry of Interior (MOI) as Taiwan’s first low carbon exhibition, for which it received a Low Carbon Exposition Gold Award (低碳博覽會金質獎). The Expo Park has installed 934.1kW of electricity generating capacity from the wind and sun, supplying 100% renewable power to the festival. The purpose of the event was to raise awareness of the benefits of renewable energy and promote its adoption by demonstrating how renewable energy can be deployed in real life cases.
The event was opened by Taoyuan Mayor Cheng Wen-tsan and ECCT Chairman Giuseppe Izzo. This was followed by a tour of the Green Ark Pavilion, which featured several demonstration booths showcasing actual uses of renewable energy to power electric vehicles, electric charging stations, create circular products and certified agricultural food and beverages, including coffee brewed using solar power and beer brewed using wind power.
The Taoyuan City Government was motivated to cooperate with the ECCT’s LCI to arrange the festival by recent legislative changes. Amendments to the Renewable Energy Development Act (再生能源發展條例) passed on 12 April 2019 set a goal for Taiwan's renewable energy sources to reach a total capacity of 27 gigawatts by 2025. The changes stipulate that local governments should gauge the possibility of developing renewable energy sources in their jurisdictions in cooperation with industry. The city chose to cooperate with the ECCT because of the LCI’s reputation and track record as a champion of promoting low carbon and sustainable development in Taiwan as well as the ECCT’s leadership in promoting renewable energy through its committees, especially the Wind Energy committee, which includes members from the world’s leading wind energy developers and suppliers.
In his opening remarks, ECCT Chairman Giuseppe Izzo made the point that the world is on the brink of a climate crisis that would cause a cascading effect of extreme weather events, plant and animal extinctions that threaten the survival of the planet. Given that electricity generation is the largest source of carbon emissions globally, switching from fossil fuels to renewable energy for electricity generation is one of the most impactful ways to cut carbon emissions and pollution. Taiwan has started to adopt renewable energy but still has a long way to go. According to 2018 statistics from Taiwan Power Company, 38.8% of the Taiwan’s electricity was generated by coal-fired power plants, 38.6% by natural gas power plants, 11.4% by nuclear power plants, and only 4.9% from renewable resources. However, the renewable energy percentage is expected to rise steadily as the first of several offshore wind parks come on line later this year and the capacity of onshore wind and solar continues to rise. By demonstrating real examples of renewable energy in action, Izzo said that the intention was to show how renewable energy is not only good for the planet but that it is also an efficient and cost-effective solution for many industries. In this way, the intention is to promote the adoption of renewable energy solutions in Taoyuan and all across Taiwan.
About the Low Carbon Initiative
The ECCT launched the Low Carbon Initiative (LCI) in 2011 to showcase the best European low carbon solutions and practices through its three strong platforms: 1) Advocacy, 2) Best Practices, and 3) CSR & Education, across a broad range of industries, to raise awareness about sustainable development and promote the adoption of low carbon solutions in order to help Taiwan to reduce its carbon emissions. The LCI aims to engage local business, policy-makers and the public to work together to meet the targets set by the Taiwan government to lower carbon emissions and prepare companies to deal with rising energy costs. The LCI now has over 50 members representing companies, government agencies and consultancy firms and other organisations.
About the ECCT
With over US$50 billion in direct foreign investments, European businesses are collectively the largest group of foreign investors in Taiwan. The European Chamber of Commerce Taiwan is the largest foreign nationwide business chamber in Taiwan and the principal organisation promoting European business interests in Taiwan. The chamber represents over 900 members from 400 companies and organisations. Through a network of 30 industry and support committees, the ECCT has been successful in addressing specific concerns and providing concrete recommendations to all levels of government to facilitate improving the business environment. The ECCT annually publishes a series of position papers that comprise issues identified by its committees as hindering the further development of their respective industries and provide recommendations to the government of Taiwan for improvement of the business environment on general issues as well as industry-specific problems. They also serve to keep the European Commission and parliament as well as the governments of individual European countries informed about Taiwan’s business environment.
About Taoyuan Agriculture Expo
2019 is the second time the “Taoyuan Agricultural Expo” that has been held since the first expo was held in 2017. The 2019 Taoyuan Agricultural Expo celebrates advances in agricultural development by showcasing modern versions of agricultural production, eco-farming, healthy farming, futuristic circular agriculture and smart agriculture.