Earlier today Green Party Taiwan held a protest in front of the Legislature to highlight the plight of many different animals including the Taiwan humpback dolphin. What follows is a press release from Green Party Taiwan on the plight of the Taiwan humpback dolphins.
[For Immediate Release]
Press Release: Taiwan Green Party, 9 January 2008
Taiwan Humpback Dolphin
Echoing concerns from a newly-formed group of international scientists organized for the purpose of giving advice on conservation of a small group of dolphins off the west coast of central Taiwan and their habitat, the Taiwan Green Party today called upon the Taiwan government and all legislative and presidential candidates to heed warnings from local environmental groups on the threats to the quality of life to Taiwanese as demonstrated by the imminent extinction of the Chinese Humpback Dolphin.
The Green Party recommends an immediate halt to all development on Taiwan’s west coast until a full assessment can be made of the long term environmental and health risks, and until the actual economic benefits (and sacrifices or tradeoffs) of these development projects can be ascertained. Projects included are the Hushan Reservoir, the Third Stage of the Central Science Park, the Eighth Naphtha Cracker, Formosa Steel, Off-shore wind farms and dozens of others at the local and national levels.
“None of these projects went through anything that approximates a responsible environmental impact assessment” said Pan Hansheng, Secretary General, “it is time that the government stop listening exclusively to parties that have vested short-term economic interests, and start taking seriously its obligations under local laws and international norms.
All political parties agree that Taiwan will benefit from more participation in the international community. The Green Party believes it is time to start acting on this consensus, and the establishment of an international advisory group to assist with the protection of the Sousa chinensis is an excellent step in the right direction. This international advisory group will provide our government officials, so often at the apparent beck and call of industrialists, the kind of backing they need to reconsider infrastructure development plans that have brought Taiwan to the brink of environmental disaster and which are certain to lead us to become an environmental pariah in the international community.
The Green Party looks forward to participating in public debates on industrial policy, specific development projects in western Taiwan, and to joining a coalition of social and environmental groups to supervise the government’s implementation of its legal obligations under Taiwan’s Basic Environmental Act. That law, passed in 2002, mandates that short term economic development must yield to development that is sustainable, development that does not deprive any future generation of the ability to satisfy its basic needs for clean air and water, healthy food, and freedom from stress and social oppression.
For additional information contact
Taiwan Green Party, Chang Hung-lin