Starting next year, drivers in Taiwan will be required to add biodiesel in addition to gasoline to their vehicles to reduce air pollution, following revision of the Energy Administration Law by a committee of the Legislative Yuan.

The China Post reports that economics Minister Steve R. L. Chen said Taoyuan and Chiayi counties have been designated as the first counties to implement the biodiesel program, with all gas stations there supplying biodiesel beginning in July this year.

All vehicles are required to add one percent of biodiesel to their total purchase when they fill up, under the law. The ratio will be increased to two percent by 2010. The state-run Chinese Petroleum Corp. and the private sector‘‘s Formosa Petrochemical Corp. will be responsible for supplying biodiesel at gas stations that use their gasoline.

The new rule is aimed at coping with a possible shortage of supply in energy, particularly petroleum. There are presently four main suppliers of biodiesel in Taiwan. All of them are gearing up to boost output in meeting expected growing demand. Some of them are also planning to ship their products abroad.

Other preliminary rules approved by the lawmakers include the reduction in the safety reserves for petroleum importing companies to 10,000 kiloliters from the current 50,000 kiloliters to promote market competition. But the reserves for oil refining companies will remain unchanged at 50,000 kiloliters.

Several other measures are in store to enable Taiwan to better cope with energy and environmental problems. Ethanol-blended gasoline will be available at seven gas stations in Taipei beginning in September, said Yeh Huey-ching, chief of the Bureau of Energy under the Ministry of Economic Affairs (MOEA). As part of a pioneer project to promote biomass energy, the seven stations set to provide E3 ethanol-blended gasoline — which will consist of 97 percent of gasoline and 3 percent of ethanol — will serve mostly vehicles owned by government agencies. But they also welcome private cars to use the product.

Yeh said since the ethanol-blended gasoline, estimated to cost NT$30 per liter, is more expensive than gasoline, the ministry will draft a bill that allows subsidization for ethanol-blended gasoline.

The Environmental Protection Administration (EPA) already announced a plan that would require each household to recycle their waste cooking oil to be used in the production of biodiesel starting in July. Made from waste cooking oil or rapeseed and soy beans, biodiesel can be used in the place of or in a mixture with regular diesel to fuel machinery to reduce the amount of carbon dioxide emitted into the atmosphere.

Garbage collection trucks will begin carrying bins to collect waste cooking oil from the public, who will be prohibited from mixing other kinds of waste into the oil, starting in July. Those failing to comply with the new mandatory policy will face a fine of NT$1,200.

Taiwan produces between 7 to 8.5 metric tons of waste cooking oil each year, with fast food restaurants, food factories, schools, restaurants, and food stalls making up 80 percent of the total. Households account for 20 percent

Ano da Publicação:
WARMER BULLETIN ENEWS #17-2007-April 27, 2007
Kit Strange/Warmer Bulletin
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