2020 Asia-Pacific Mercury Monitoring Network Meeting

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2020 Asia-Pacific Mercury Monitoring Network Meeting

Date: September 8, 2020

The 9th Asia-Pacific Mercury Monitoring Network Annual Meeting was held on September 8, 2020. Given the continued spread of COVID-19 around the world, the meeting was held online. A total of more than 50 experts and scholars from 18 countries participated.
The meeting was kicked off with speeches by Taiwan EPA Deputy Minister Hung-Teh Tsai and USEPA Principal Deputy Assistant Administrator Jane Nishida. Deputy Minister Tsai mentioned that 2020 has been a fruitful year for APMMN, which expanded from 7 partner countries in 2012 to 18 partner countries in 2020. And last year, thanks to the hard work of APMMN partners, our network was honored by UNEP Executive Director Inger Andersen in her speech at the Opening of the Conference of the Parties to the Minamata Convention on Mercury, because the “APMMN strengthens national capacity and supports a region-wide network of mercury monitoring laboratories.”
Ms. Nishida praised the development and expansion of the APMMN, and said she was glad that the program has gained partners since it was first founded as a rainwater collection platform. Partners such as the Ministry of the Environment of Japan have been actively assisting with the carrying out of APMMN activities. In the future, other than rainwater collection and the strengthening of air quality monitoring, cooperation in other fields – for example bio-data – can be anticipated. As a critical part of the program, the capacity of laboratories in National Central University could also be expanded. As the visibility and momentum of the APMMN continue to grow, Taiwan’s continued leadership and the commitment of its experts will be essential.
At this meeting, partner countries discussed: the latest updates on the Minamata Convention; the APMMN overview and report on the state of the network; expanding the utility of rainwater and air mercury monitoring data; and they also exchanged ideas on the most recent developments in atmospheric mercury monitoring. The purpose of the meeting was to not only increase the capacity of partner countries to monitor atmospheric mercury, but also to assist in evaluating the effectiveness of implementation of the Minamata Convention.

Taiwan partners with EU to promote circular economy

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Taiwan partners with EU to promote circular economy

Date: Dec. 9, 2019

To promote Taiwan-EU circular economy cooperation, the Minister of the Taiwan EPA, Chang Tzi-chin, led a delegation of representatives from government, research institutions, and manufacturing firms to attend the 2019 EU-Taiwan Circular Economy Seminar in Brussels, Belgium, on December 9, 2019. During the seminar, Mr. Timo Pesonen, Director General of the European Development Agency, and Ms. Joanna Drake, Deputy Director General of the European Environment Agency, shared their experiences and results regarding plastic recycling, recycling of construction materials, and design and recycling of solar panels in their cooperation between Taiwan and the EU.

The Taiwan EPA will hold a series of activities including “EU innovation week” and “circular economy week” in 2020. In addition, high-level EU representatives will be invited to participate and cooperate with Taiwan-EU industries, to make Taiwan a circular economy island.

Taiwan-US Eco-Campus Partnership Program Award Ceremony

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Taiwan-US Eco-Campus Partnership Program Award Ceremony

Date: Dec. 4, 2019

The Taiwan-US Eco-Campus Award Ceremony was held at Jinlong Elementary School in New Taipei City on December 4, 2019. The event was hosted by the Environmental Protection Administration of Taiwan, and saw Mr. Mark Kasman from the US Environmental Protection Agency along with a representative from the American Institute in Taiwan to present the awards. Representatives from the Ministry of Education, local Education Bureaus, local Environmental Protection Bureaus and eco-campus schools also participated in the event. This year, representatives from 36 schools from around the country were in attendance to receive awards, including three Green Flags, 13 Silver Medals, and 21 Bronze Medals.

Posters were displayed to show the achievements and uniqueness of each school’s environmental roadmap. Jinlong Elementary School, which assisted in the event, was awarded an Eco-Campus School Silver Medal Certification this year. Their Ecological Action Team led the invited guests on a tour of the school to display the highlights and achievements of their eco-campus.

2019 Practitioners’ Workshop on Solid Waste Law Enforcement

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2019 Practitioners’ Workshop on Solid Waste Law Enforcement

Date: Dec. 3, 2019

The Practitioners’ Workshop on Solid Waste Law Enforcement (PWSWE) was held in Taichung from December 3-5, 2019. Senior experts from the US EPA were invited to share law enforcement practices throughout the three-day workshop. During the event participants also gained valuable experience learning about the practical operation of environmental analysis instruments.
To strengthen the relationships between New Southbound countries and Taiwan, the workshop invited government officials from Thailand, Vietnam, Laos, and the Asian Environmental Compliance and Enforcement Network. In addition, Taiwan’s environmental law enforcement personnel were invited to share their experiences.
The workshop aimed to improve environmental law enforcement practices through the sharing of achievements and experience in law enforcement from the US and Taiwan. Participants from New Southbound countries also had the opportunity to discuss what they need in order to establish sound law enforcement systems in their respective countries.

Taiwan EPA partners with US EPA to host the 9th Meeting of International E-waste Management Network

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Taiwan EPA partners with US EPA to host the 9th Meeting of International E-waste Management Network

Date: Dec. 2, 2019

The 9th annual meeting of the International E-waste Management Network was held in Bangkok, Thailand from December 2-4, 2019. Over 50 experts and scholars from nine countries shared their experiences with building partnerships concerning E-waste management, recycling management systems and innovative technologies, thereby strengthening the sharing of information on international E-waste management.

The Taiwan EPA pointed out that Taiwan has helped to establish successful recycling policy models in many countries. This year, the meeting focused on the communication between countries to improve E-waste management systems. Experts from Brazil shared information on their challenges and on the implementation of a new E-waste reverse logistics system plan. This will be an important incentive for partner countries to set up resource recycling systems, and also demonstrates the impact over the years of Taiwan-US cooperation and partner meetings in the field of international e-waste management.

During the meeting, Taiwan shared information on its successful recycling system with the partner countries and presented several new sustainable innovations for recycling, thus promoting Taiwan’s recycling industry to the world.

2019 Asia-Pacific Children’s Health Environmental Symposium

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2019 Asia-Pacific Children’s Health Environmental Symposium

Date: Oct. 19, 2019

Under the International Environmental Partnership program, the Taiwan EPA, US EPA, and the Health Promotion Administration, Taiwan jointly held the 2019 Asia-Pacific Children’s Health Environmental Symposium on Oct. 19 to 20 in Taipei, Taiwan. Speakers and participants from the US, Taiwan, and their partner countries in the Asia-Pacific region, including Afghanistan, Laos, Malaysia, the Maldives, Mongolia, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Thailand, and Vietnam took part in the event.

To open the symposium, a video welcome message was delivered by Vice President Chien-Jen Chen, who attended the first children’s health symposium in 2017. During the opening ceremony, Taiwan EPA Minister Tzi-Chin Chang stated that children’s health, along with environmental protection, is of great importance to the Taiwan EPA. In addition, Acting Secretary General Shun-Ping Cheng of the Ministry of Health and Welfare, Taiwan, Principal Deputy Assistant Administrator Jane Nishida of the US EPA, and Deputy Director Raymond Greene of the American Institute in Taiwan all voiced their opinions in the opening ceremony.

Through the symposium, Taiwan and the USA shared their experiences in children’s health protection with the partner countries, in an effort to promote children’s health with environmental protection in the region. Furthermore, challenges and key priority areas in children’s environmental health protection were identified, allowing the partner countries to develop their own roadmaps to a healthier environment.

Global Environmental Education Partnership Meeting held in Lexington, Kentucky

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Global Environmental Education Partnership Meeting held in Lexington, Kentucky

Date: October 14-18, 2019

A Global Environmental Education Partnership (GEEP) Meeting was held from October 14 to 18 in Lexington, Kentucky, USA. A total of 38 experts and scholars from 14 countries attended the meeting, namely: Australia, Botswana, Canada, Denmark, Finland, India, Japan, Kenya, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Russia, the US and Taiwan.

The participants reached a consensus to strengthen GEEP’s diversified communication network, building a model of international cooperation and environmental education based on GEEP, and considering how to contact and reach more ethnic groups.

2019 International Conference on Mercury as a Global Pollutant

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2019 International Conference on Mercury as a Global Pollutant

Date: September 8-13, 2019

The 2019 International Conference on Mercury as a Global Pollutant (ICMGP) was held in Poland from September 8 to 13, 2019. The ICMGP is held every two years, and is one of the largest conferences on mercury pollution problems.
The topics at the 2019 ICMGP included: the Asia-Pacific Mercury Monitoring Network for atmospheric mercury transportation and deposition in the region; the current status of the Minamata Convention on Mercury and scientific assessment; using advanced technologies to reduce mercury pollution emissions; mercury cycling in the ecosystem; and analysis technologies for mercury compounds.

2019 Asia-Pacific Mercury Monitoring Network Partners Meeting

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2019 Asia-Pacific Mercury Monitoring Network Partners Meeting

Date: August 14, 2019

The Taiwan EPA, with the collaboration from the US EPA and the Indonesia’s Ministry of Environment and Forestry, held the 8th Asia-Pacific Mercury Monitoring Network (APMMN) Workshop in Jakarta, Indonesia from Aug. 14 to 16. The Taiwan EPA delegation was led by Mr. Yeuh-bin Wang, Deputy Director-General of the Department of Environmental Monitoring and Information Management. During the opening ceremony, Mr. Wang thanked the US EPA for their past support on mercury monitoring and looked forward to future collaboration. Furthermore, Mr. Wang also encouraged other partner countries to join the network and create a wider scope of mercury monitoring in the Asia-Pacific region.

The three-day annual event included status update on mercury monitoring in the partner countries and strategic planning of the APMMN’s future goal. The meeting concluded with a site visit to one of Indonesian’s artisanal and small-scale gold mining, which releases a tremendous amount of mercury into the atmosphere, as well as a mercury monitoring laboratory.

This year, the event also included a workshop held by the Ministry of Environment of Japan on atmospheric mercury monitoring. It is the second time MOEJ has held the workshop in conjunction with the APMMN meeting.

2019 International Chemical and Mercury Management Conference held in Taipei

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2019 International Chemical and Mercury Management Conference held in Taipei

Date: August 7-8, 2019

The Taiwan EPA held the 2019 International Chemical and Mercury Management Conference in Taipei from August 7 to 8, 2019. During the two-day event, Taiwan showcased its determination and effort to participate in the Minamata Convention, through its active implementation of risk controls and measures to ban mercury-containing products. The discussions that took place during the event brought forth new information and outlooks on the current development of international chemical management policies, corporate social responsibility, personnel training and environmental sustainability.