J Mater Cycles Waste Manag (2005) 7:1–7 DOI 10.1007/s10163-004-0119-9
© Springer-Verlag 2005
SPECIAL FEATURE: ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Material Cycles and Waste Management is Asia (2)
Chun-Chao Lin · Chun-hsu Lin
What substances or objects should be recycled? The recycling legislative experience in Taiwan
Received: October 1, 2004 / Accepted: October 10, 2004
Abstract The legislative framework of waste management in Taiwan has never been efﬁcient, mainly due to unclear deﬁnitions and regulations. In 2002, this system was split into two parts by enacting a new law, the Resource Recycling and Re-use Act (RRRA). However, it then became more complicated and recycling effectiveness ...view middle of the document...
2% and decreased the landﬁll rate to 29.4% in 2002.2 Nineteen large-scale incinerators were then in operation, and eight more plants are now in the planning stage or under construction. With assistance from the environmentalists, people are becoming aware of the importance of environmental protection, and are now more concerned about the effects of incineration. They have also begun to cooperate to challenge the effectiveness of incineration, especially in dioxin control, and protest strongly against the incineration policy. How to mitigate and remedy the dangerous effects of this inappropriate policy and work efﬁciently for environmental protection has become a serious issue in Taiwan. Traditional waste disposal approaches, such as landﬁll and incineration, encounter strong opposition nowadays. Therefore, it is necessary to search for alternative policies. Radical compulsory measures, such as environmental tax, extended producer responsibility (EPR), a cap and trade system, or compulsory recycling regulations are needed to break through the dilemma. The Taiwan government recently declared new policies and objectives aimed at achieving a “sound material cycle” and a “zero-waste” society. However, things are not proceeding according to plan now that the Resource Recycling and Reuse Act3 (RRRA) has been promulgated. Problems about decisions between resource recycling or waste disposal still exist. This article focuses mainly on the recycling management problems in Taiwan, and proposes some modiﬁcations for the future.
Management structures for waste and recyclable resources
In Taiwan’s Waste Disposal Act4 (WDA), “waste” is not clearly deﬁned, but is divided into two main categories, general waste (MSW) and industrial waste (non-MSW). The management framework for MSW and non-MSW is shown in Fig. 1. Taiwan’s Environmental Protection Administra-
C.-C. Lin (*) · C. Lin Institute of Environment and Resources, 7th FL, No. 45, Han-Ko St., Sec. 1, Taipei 100, Taiwan Tel. 886-2-23753013 (ext. 150); Fax 886-2-23753011 e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
2 Fig. 1. Categories and management structure of waste in accordance with the Waste Disposal Act. MSW, municipal solid waste
Fig. 2. Management structure of the Resource Recycling and Reuse Act. EPA, environmental protection administration Fig. 3. Management hierarchy and the relation between the Waste Disposal Act (WDA) and the Resource Recycling and Re-use Act (RRRA)
tion (Taiwan EPA) is in charge of supervising the execution, licensing, penalties, and management of the whole system. According to the RRRA, “recyclable resources” are deﬁned as “substances that have lost their original utility, are technologically and economically feasible to recycle, and may be recycled or re-used pursuant to announcement or approval in this Act.” The recycling operation is further divided into two areas: re-use and regeneration. The Taiwan EPA is in charge of the re-use measures or controls, while other...