黃山徽州建設「生態美超市」 推動農村綠色生活

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據報,中國黃山徽州區潛口鎮潛口村是全國文明村和全國生態村,該村於2018年9月建成「生態美超市」,並對外運營。

生態美超市實行「積分換物」經營模式,在超市醒目位置張貼商品價目表和回收物兌換標準表,每週1天或每月確定2天開放民眾兌換回收品。超市要求村民將收集的垃圾先行分類後,再交至業務員清點、核算、兌換,並引導其分類放至垃圾桶內。農戶憑積分自主選擇兌換相應價值的鹽、毛巾、洗衣粉等生活用品,積分可即時兌換,可零存整取,可轉贈他人。

潛口村生態美超市截至目前累計兌換7,408人次;兌換垃圾4.5噸,農藥廢棄包裝物1.2萬件,兌換生活用品金額3.3萬元。

生態美超市不只潛口村一家,黃山徽州區自2018年8月在全區43個行政村和4個城市社區全面啟動「生態美超市」建設,將村民日常生活產生的不易降解和處理、容易造成環境污染的生產生活垃圾,如塑膠袋、飲料瓶、一次性紙杯、煙盒、煙蒂、廢舊電池等列入回收範圍,並進行無害化、資源化處理,實現減量化目標。

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環境資訊中心外電;姜唯 翻譯;林大利 審校;稿源:ENS

全世界每分鐘購買近一百萬個塑膠瓶。隨著塑膠對環境的影響成為政治問題,包裝商品製造商和零售商不得不想辦法減少一次性容器流通。現在他們提出了解決問題的新想法和新技術。

過去的50年間,由於廉價一次性用品需求廣泛成長,塑膠的產量激增,造成環境破壞。儘管大眾對於遍布塑膠垃圾的海灘和吃下塑膠死亡的海洋動物屍體照片感到憤怒,塑膠浪潮卻沒有快速止息的跡象。

石油工業正投入數十億美元興建新廠房,以生產更多的塑膠,尤其是全球最大塑膠產品和塑膠垃圾產地-亞洲。

聚對苯二甲酸乙二酯(PET)常用於汽水和礦泉水瓶,以及其他家用或個人護理產品。市場研究公司歐睿國際(Euromonitor International)的資料顯示,僅去年一年,這些塑膠瓶的銷量就超過了4,800億瓶,幾乎是每分鐘一百萬瓶。

(Euromonitor International)包裝研究全球負責人道尼(Rosemarie Downey)告訴路透社,將循環設計原則導入包裝,也就是考慮產品的整個生命週期,包括使用和再利用,是品牌解決產品垃圾過多的一種方法,可以幫助回收、循環和再利用,減少塑膠廢棄物對環境的破壞。

歐盟已投票通過,2021年起禁用包括吸管、塑膠刀叉等10種一次性塑膠製品。所有塑膠包裝(塑膠廢棄物的主要來源)到2030年必須全面回收。

全球每年產生大量塑膠垃圾。Chesapeake Bay Program(CC BY-NC 2.0)

所有塑膠廢棄物都可以重製成新塑膠

面對這個棘手的問題,科學家和企業的產品設計人員都在尋找防止一次性塑膠製品在環境中擴散的方法。

瑞典哥德堡查爾默斯理工大學,由太空、地球與環境系能源技術組主任圖曼教授領導的研究小組認為塑膠的韌性是一種資產。

圖曼說,塑膠不可降解的特性使其成為環境災難,也是循環使用的首選材料,是舊塑膠真正的價值所在,為塑膠的收集提供了經濟動力。

圖曼的研究團隊將塑膠蒸汽裂解,進行化學回收實驗,開發出一種可以將任何類型的塑膠廢棄物分解成分子的技術,所生成的氣體可轉化為品質與原始塑膠相同的新塑膠。

「我們找到合適的溫度(大約攝氏850度)、合適的加熱速率和停留時間,能夠每小時將200公斤塑膠廢棄物轉變成有用的氣體混合物。接著在分子層級回收,成為品質如初的新塑膠。」 圖曼說。

新製程可以讓今日的塑膠工廠變成回收精煉廠,並繼續利用既有的設備。

可口可樂用塑膠垃圾製造瓶子

10月15日,可口可樂公司與多個企業合作啟動「增強型回收」計畫(enhanced recycling),推出第一批用回收來的海洋塑膠廢棄物製成的概念塑膠瓶,顯示海洋塑膠垃圾確實可再利用於食品和飲料包裝。

雖然技術尚處於起步階段,但合作團隊還是生產出塑膠瓶樣品,作為概念驗證。

300個樣品瓶有25%的材料來自海洋塑膠廢棄物。可口可樂基金會部分贊助的循環海洋計畫(Mares Circulares)在西班牙和葡萄牙舉辦了84次淨灘活動,加上地中海12個港口的漁民帶回的塑膠廢棄物,投入此次概念瓶的製作。

海廢塑膠瓶顯示增強型回收技術的確有革命性的潛力,可以將使用過的任何品質的塑膠回收為食品或飲料包裝所需的高品質新塑膠。

一小步背後的高潛力技術

短期內,增強型回收將以商業規模導入既有回收商的廢棄物流,包括過去不可回收的塑膠和劣質可回收材料。可口可樂規劃2020年起將增強型回收用於部分產品的塑膠瓶。

可口可樂西歐公司技術和供應鏈總監岡佩爾(Bruno van Gompel)表示,增強回收技術的潛力巨大,不僅對本公司,對整個產業和社會都是令人振奮的消息。它能加速塑膠閉環經濟的發展,因此我們選擇投資。」

開發出專利增強型回收技術的荷蘭公司Ioniqa Technologies執行長胡浩(Tonnis Hooghoudt)說:「增強型回收將影響全球。透過與可口可樂和其他創投夥伴合作生產這種塑膠瓶,我們已經展現這種技術的潛力。我們的新工廠現已投入營運,並且正在擴大技術規模。我們的目標是徹底消除一次性塑膠和塑膠廢棄物。」

菲律賓塑膠回收場的勞工。 。(CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

數十個國家正試圖透過立法控制塑膠爆量。加拿大自由派首相特魯多(Justin Trudeau)政府6月宣布,2021年起將禁止一次性塑膠。

儘管具體細節尚未公布,但加拿大政府的宣示為可口可樂和百事可樂等賣了數十億個寶特瓶的大企業帶來壓力。

可口可樂公司表示,他們在2017年使用了300萬噸塑膠,每分鐘約200,000個塑膠瓶,百事可樂尚未公布其塑膠用量。

HP用海洋塑膠製造電腦

NextWave Plastics成員之一惠普公司(HP Inc.)9月27日宣布推出HP Elite Dragonfly,全世界第一台用海洋塑膠製造的筆記型電腦。

HP Elite Dragonfly是全世界最輕薄的商用電腦,重量不到一公斤(2.2磅)。它的揚聲器外殼50%是二手品回收再製塑膠,包括5%的海洋塑膠。

除了HP Elite Dragonfly外,HP還有另外兩種用海洋塑膠製成的產品,分別是全世界第一個海廢顯示器HP EliteDisplay E273d,以及用來自海地的海洋塑膠垃圾製成的墨水匣。

為確保海洋塑膠產品的規模繼續擴大,惠普承諾2020年推出的所有新款HP Elite、HP Pro桌上型和筆記型電腦中都含有海洋塑膠。

該公司還宣布,他們在海地進行的特殊回收計畫已經升級超過100萬磅的海洋塑膠瓶。

截至目前,HP已從海地採購了超過一百萬磅(450公噸)的海洋塑膠,等於超過3500萬個塑膠瓶,用於生產自家產品。

除了保護海洋和地球之外,HP的海洋塑膠計畫還為當地社區的經濟發展和教育創造了新的機會。 在海地,HP與「第一英里聯盟」的合作為該國成年人創造了1,100多個收入機會,並為150名兒童提供高品質教育、食品和醫療援助。

NextWave成員公司正在將海洋塑膠製成商品,以減少塑膠廢棄物進入海洋。同時也正往實現聯合國永續發展目標14.1邁進,要在2025年底之前減少至少25,000噸塑膠(相當於12億個寶特瓶)進入海洋 。

Turning the Plastic Tide NEW YORK, New York, October 22, 2019 (ENS)

Every minute around the world, almost one million plastic bottles are purchased. As the environmental impact of that plastic tide swells into a political issue, packaged goods sellers and retailers, pressured to stem the flow of single-use bottles and containers, are coming up with new ideas and technologies to solve the problem.

Plastic production has surged in the past 50 years, responding to the widespread demand for inexpensive, single-use disposable products that are devastating the environment. And, while images of plastic debris-covered beaches and marine animals dead from eating plastic have triggered public outrage, it won’t stop anytime soon.

The oil industry is pouring billions into new facilities to produce more plastics, particularly in Asia, the biggest regional producer of plastic and plastic waste.

Polyethylene terephthalate (PET) bottles are commonly used for soft drinks and mineral water, but can also be used for other household or personal care products. Data from Euromonitor International shows that more than 480 billion of these bottles were sold last year alone – almost one million every minute.

Rosemarie Downey, global head of packaging research at market research company , told Reuters that adopting circular design principles in packaging, which considers the entire lifecycle of a product, including use and reuse, is one way for brands to address surplus waste at the outset and can assist recovery, recycling, and reuse in order to reduce the damaging impact of plastic waste in the environment.

“Ultimately, mindful consumption of plastic is a global duty of everyone,” Downey said. “Consumers have their part to play to help realize zero-litter, as do corporate players in their use and handling, and governments in providing the necessary, optimized waste management infrastructure.”

The European Union has voted to outlaw 10 single-use plastic items, including straws, forks and knives, by 2021. It has also set targets for all plastic packaging, the top source of plastic waste, to be recyclable by 2030.

Faced with this difficult problem, scientists and corporate product designers alike have been searching for ways to keep single-use plastic items from proliferating in the environment.

The fact that plastics do not break down but accumulate in our ecosystems is a major environmental problem. But at Chalmers University of Technology in Gothenburg, Sweden, a research group led by Professor Henrik Thunman, who heads the Division of Energy Technology at the Department of Space, Earth and Environment, sees the resilience of plastic as an asset.

The nondegradable character of plastic that makes it such an environmental disaster also makes it a candidate for circular usage, creating a true value for used plastic, and thus an economic incentive to collect it, Thunman explains.

“We should not forget that plastic is a fantastic material – it gives us products that we could otherwise only dream of,” Thunman said. “The problem is that it is manufactured at such low cost, that it has been cheaper to produce new plastics from oil and fossil gas than from reusing plastic waste.”

Now, through experimenting with chemical recovery via steam cracking of plastic, Thunman’s research group at Chalmers has developed an efficient process for breaking any type of plastic waste down to a molecular level. The resulting gases can then be transformed into new plastics of the same quality as the original plastic.

“Through finding the right temperature, which is around 850 degrees Celsius, and the right heating rate and residence time, we have been able to demonstrate the proposed method at a scale where we turn 200 kg of plastic waste an hour into a useful gas mixture. That can then be recycled at the molecular level to become new plastic materials of virgin quality,” says Thunman.

The new process could transform today’s plastic factories into recycling refineries, right within the framework of their existing infrastructure.

Coca-Cola Makes Bottles From Plastic Ocean Debris

On October 15, the Coca-Cola company unveiled the first sample bottle made using recovered and recycled marine plastics, demonstrating that plastic ocean debris can be used in recycled packaging for food and drinks.

The sample bottle is the result of a partnership between Ioniqa Technologies, Indorama Ventures, Mares Circulares (Circular Seas) and The Coca-Cola Company.

Although enhanced recycling is still in its infancy, the partners produced the sample marine plastic bottles as a proof of concept for what the technology may achieve in time.

About 300 sample bottles have been produced using 25 percent recycled marine plastic retrieved from the Mediterranean Sea and beaches. The marine plastic in the bottles was collected and recovered by volunteers who participated in 84 beach cleanups in Spain and Portugal, as well as fishermen in 12 ports across the Mediterranean Sea, as part of the Mares Circulares or Circular Seas project, partially funded by The Coca-Cola Foundation.

The marine plastic bottle was developed to show the transformational potential of revolutionary enhanced recycling technologies, which can recycle previously used plastics of any quality back to the high-quality virgin plastic needed for food or drinks packaging.

A small step, but the technology behind it has big potential.

In the immediate term, enhanced recycling will be introduced at commercial scale using waste streams from existing recyclers, including previously unrecyclable plastics and lower-quality recyclables. From 2020, Coca-Cola plans to roll out this enhanced recycled content in some of its bottles.

Bruno van Gompel, technical and supply chain director, Coca-Cola Western Europe, says the potential for the technology is huge. “Enhanced recycling technologies are enormously exciting, not just for us but for industry and society at large. They accelerate the prospect of a closed-loop economy for plastic, which is why we are investing behind them.”

“As these begin to scale,” said van Gompel, “we will see all kinds of used plastics returned, as good as new, not just once but again and again, diverting waste streams from incineration and landfill.”

Tonnis Hooghoudt, CEO of Ioniqa Technologies, the Dutch company that developed the proprietary enhanced recycling technology, says, “The impact of enhanced recycling will be felt on a global scale. By working with Coca-Cola and Indorama to produce this bottle, we aim to show what this technology can deliver. Our new plant is now operational and we are bringing this technology to scale. In doing so, we aim to eliminate the concept of single-use plastic and plastic waste altogether.”

Some countries are trying to control the plastic tide through legislation. The Canadian government led by Liberal Prime Minister Justin Trudeau in June announced a ban on single-use plastics by 2021, joining over two dozen countries that have made similar moves.

Although specific details have yet to be released, Canada’s announcement puts pressure on big companies like Coca-Cola and PepsiCo that sell billions of single-use plastic bottles.

While PepsiCo has not yet disclosed its plastic use, Coca-Cola has shared that it used three million metric tons of plastic in 2017 – about 200,000 plastic bottles every minute.

Writing for “Corporate Knights,” a Canadian publication, Tim Nash said on June 17, “The massive amount of plastic waste in our water systems is becoming impossible to ignore. We know about the Great Pacific Garbage Patch, we’ve seen the large amounts of plastic being found in whales that wash up on shore, and we’ve heard about the latest study from WWF showing that the average person ingests a credit card’s worth of microplastics every single week.”

“Although specific details have yet to be released, Canada’s announcement puts pressure on big companies like Coca-Cola and PepsiCo that sell billions of single-use plastic bottles,” states Nash.

“I will give Coca-Cola credit for setting goals to design packaging that’s 100 percent recyclable globally by 2025, use at least 50 percent recycled materials by 2030, as well as collect and recycle the equivalent of 100 percent of every bottle and can sold by 2030,” wrote Nash. “They have their work cut out for them.”

HP Constructs Computers With Ocean-Bound Plastics

Computer-maker HP Inc., a member of NextWave Plastics, on September 27 announced the launch of the HP Elite Dragonfly, the world’s first notebook manufactured with ocean-bound plastics.

The HP Elite Dragonfly is the world’s lightest, most compact business computer, weighing less than one kilogram (2.2 pounds). Its speaker enclosure component is made with 50 percent post-consumer recycled plastic, including five percent ocean-bound plastics.

The HP Elite Dragonfly is one of three HP products made with ocean-bound plastics. Others include the HP EliteDisplay E273d, the world’s first display manufactured with ocean-bound plastics, and the Original HP ink cartridges made with plastic bottles collected in Haiti.

To ensure their ocean-bound plastics efforts continue to scale, HP commits to including ocean-bound plastic material in all new HP Elite and HP Pro desktop and notebook computers launching in 2020.

The company also announced it has upcycled more than one million pounds of ocean-bound plastic bottles as part of its unique operating model for recycling in Haiti.

To date, HP has sourced over one million pounds (450 metric tonnes) – more than 35 million plastic bottles – of ocean-bound plastics from Haiti for its products.

In addition to protecting the oceans and the planet, HP’s ocean-bound plastic programs are also creating new opportunities for economic advancement and education in local communities. In Haiti, HP’s partnership with the First Mile Coalition has helped create more than 1,100 income opportunities for adults in the country and has provided 150 children with quality education, food, and medical assistance.

NextWave member companies are establishing ocean-bound plastics as a commodity to decrease the volume of plastic waste before it enters the ocean.

“Since joining NextWave Plastics last year, HP has been a standout partner, and we are thrilled to see the team continue to lead the way in scaling one of the most effective supply chains that is turning off the tap on ocean-bound plastics while improving the local community,” said Dune Ives, executive director of Lonely Whale, the convening entity for NextWave Plastics, a consortium of worldwide businesses committed to scaling the use of ocean-bound plastics.

“There are currently more than 86 million metric tons of plastic in our ocean, and each year, over eight million metric tons of additional plastic enters the ocean,” Ives said. “We are proud that our member companies continue to scale commercially viable and operational ocean-bound plastics supply chains – keeping plastic in the economy and out of the ocean.”

NextWave member companies are currently on track, in alignment with UN Sustainable Development Goal 14.1, to divert a minimum of 25,000 tonnes of plastics, the equivalent of 1.2 billion single-use plastic water bottles, from entering the ocean by the end of the year 2025.

Ellen Jackowski, global head of Sustainability Strategy & Innovation, HP Inc, said, “Our circular economy strategy is about shifting our production to eliminate waste and enable a system that can sustain our levels of consumption in harmony with nature and our singular planet Earth for generations to come.”

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作者

如果有一件事是重要的,如果能為孩子實現一個願望,那就是人類與大自然和諧共存。

於特有生物研究保育中心服務,小鳥和棲地是主要的研究對象。是龜毛的讀者,認為龜毛是探索世界的美德。

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環境資訊中心外電;姜唯 翻譯;林大利 審校;稿源:ENS

位於寮國北部湄公河的沙耶武里水壩將在數日內正式啟用。沙耶武里水壩是湄公河主流下游的第一座水壩,它的啟用象徵著湄公河命運的重要轉折點。

湄公河長4,350公里,是世界第12長河,排水量世界第八。發源於青藏高原,流經中國、緬甸、寮國和泰國,接著湧入柬埔寨和越南的沖積平原和三角洲。

沙耶武里水壩的主要目的是水力發電,其95%的發電量將由泰國電力局購買。

沙耶武里水壩打從一開始就是一個爭議性的工程,許多人擔心它對河流系統的作用,包括使湄公河的洄游魚類和沈積物難以往下游移動,可能連鄰國都會受影響。

大壩對環境的影響進而威脅流域內居民的糧食來源、生計和社會文化體系。

沙耶武里水壩即將完工。照片來源:

許多專家認為,湄公河上游中國境內已經建了六座水壩,寮國甚至柬埔寨下游還要再蓋,已經讓湄公河深陷危機。

沙耶武里水壩諮詢過程中,有許多利害關係者表示關切,質疑資料和研究是否充分。

越南政府呼籲暫停所有主流上水壩的建設10年,以進一步研究、更深入地了解河流系統和水壩的可能影響。

泰國湄公河沿岸的社區代表於2012年向泰國行政法院提起訴訟,質疑泰國向沙耶武里水壩購買電力的計畫。此訴訟案別具指標性,但經過數次上訴,七年後的今日仍懸而未決。

儘管如此,沙耶武里水壩的開發並沒有停止,開發商重新設計以減輕疑慮。

後續的大壩工程計畫也持續在進行。本月,湄公河委員會宣布開始對湄公河下游的第五座主流水壩瑯勃拉邦進行事前諮商。

在沙耶武里水壩啟用前,美國非營利組織國際河網(International Rivers)發布了關於水壩的新報告。該組織邀請兩位獨立專家針對湄公河委員會今年稍早發布的沙耶武里水壩設計變更審查報告發表評論。

兩位專家分別是澳洲雪梨大學人文地理學教授賀屈(Philip Hirsch)博士和英格蘭諾桑比亞大學社會科學副教授亨森格斯(Oliver Hensengerth)博士。他們檢視沙耶武里水壩如何成為主流水壩決策模式的基準,強調「迫切需要一個真正的區域性標準程序來保護湄公河的未來。」

國際河網的聲明指出,雖然國際河網自身的立場是認為大壩的開發正在「扼殺」湄公河,但該專家評論的目的並非批評或評估湄公河委員會的管理審查報告,而是在試圖「找出關鍵點,討論它們對沙耶武里水壩和其他規劃中或興建中水壩對湄公河下游主流以及該地區內的影響。」

沙耶武里水壩開發前的地景樣貌。照片來源: (CC BY 2.0)

23日,一場針對國際河網報告的座談會在泰國曼谷外國記者俱樂部舉行,與會學者、社區和民間社團熱烈討論沙耶武里水壩工程的歷史、決策過程缺陷、進行中的活動以及對生態系統與居民的影響。

國際河網認為,沙耶武里水壩興建過程「工程先行,研究後補」的做法很不負責任。(詳見)

湄公河沖積平原和三角洲是全世界農業產量極高、生物多樣性極豐富的水域之一,但是海平面上升、土地沉降、上游超過126個規劃中水壩以及各式各樣三角洲水利基礎設施讓人們不得不對水力發電的潛在問題感到憂心。

國際河網不是唯一一個對湄公河流域感到擔憂的環境組織。

丹麥DHI顧問集團針對湄公河三角洲進行的研究得出的結論是,「即使是現有最佳的魚道技術,也可能無法因應大量的魚類遷徙。在高峰時期,遷徙魚群最多可達每小時300萬條。此外,可能也難以滿足該流域數百種魚類有百百種遷移方式。」

根據22日在寮國首都永珍發布的最新報告《》,負責管理流域水壩開發的湄公河委員會也對此表示關注。

湄公河委員會成立於1995年,是一個政府間組織,直接與柬埔寨、寮國、泰國和越南政府合作,共同管理共享水資源和湄公河的永續發展。

該組織是水務外交的區域平台,也是維持該區域永續發展的水資源管理知識中心。

湄公河委員會報告警告:「主流水流體系明顯永久性改變,沉積物被阻攔造成泥沙流量大量減少,濕地持續喪失,河流生態環境惡化,捕撈漁業的壓力不斷增加以及目前水開發設施和用水資訊共享有限」,是湄公河流域國家面臨的主要挑戰。

「我們現在必須解決這些問題,盡可能減少對環境的損害,並在僅剩的濕地和河邊生態環境消失之前加以保護,同時利用更穩定且有所增加的旱季流量,實現湄公河地區最佳永續發展。」湄公河委員會執行長An Pich Hatda博士在啟用儀式上對來自四個湄公河國家、近100位官員說。

最新的流域狀況報告建議:「必須緊急採取更積極的區域性流域規劃和管理方法,並加強系統性地共享資訊,並嚴格監控河流流量,以因應這些流域挑戰。」

Dam Development Is ‘Silencing’ the Mekong River BANGKOK, Thailand, October 24, 2019 (ENS)

 In five days, the Xayaburi Hydropower Project on the Mekong River in northern Laos will formally begin operations. As the first dam on the lower Mekong mainstream, this marks a turning point for the Mekong River.

The Mekong River is 4,350 kilometers (2,703 miles) long, ranked 12th in length and eighth in water discharge in the world. The river originates in the Tibetan Plateau and flows through China, Myanmar, Laos, and Thailand before pouring into the alluvial floodplains and delta in Cambodia and Vietnam.

The main purpose of the Xayaburi dam is to produce hydroelectric power, 95 percent of which is to be purchased by the Electricity Generating Authority of Thailand.

From the outset, the Xayaburi dam was a controversial project due to widespread concerns over its expected impacts on the river system, including transboundary impacts in neighboring countries.

Major predicted impacts include the destruction of Mekong migratory fisheries and trapping of sediment, preventing it from traveling downstream.

The dam’s environmental impacts, in turn, threaten the food, livelihoods and socio-cultural systems of populations residing within the river basin.

Many experts believe that the Mekong, already suffering from the impacts of six dams installed in China on the Upper Mekong, and with more dams planned downstream in Laos and possibly Cambodia, is in crisis.

During the Xayaburi dam consultation process, many stakeholders raised concerns over the project and questioned the adequacy of the data and studies.

The Vietnamese government called for a project suspension and a 10-year moratorium on all mainstream dams pending further study to better understand the river system and the impacts of planned dams.

In Thailand, community representatives along the Mekong River filed a landmark lawsuit in the Thai Administrative Court challenging Thailand’s power purchase from the project. Originally filed in 2012, following several appeals, the lawsuit remains pending more than seven years later.

Despite this, the Xayaburi dam moved forward, with the developers undertaking a redesign in an effort to mitigate concerns.

Subsequent dam projects have followed. This month, the Mekong River Commission announced the commencement of Prior Consultation for Luang Prabang, the fifth lower Mekong mainstream dam to undergo the process.

In the lead-up to the commissioning of the Xayaburi dam, the U.S.-based nonprofit group International Rivers issued a new report on the dam. The group asked two independent experts to provide comments on the Mekong River Commission’s review of the Xayaburi redesign, released earlier this year.

The report of the experts, Dr. Philip Hirsch, professor of Human Geography at the University of Sydney, Australia; and Dr. Oliver Hensengerth, associate professor of social sciences at Northumbria University, England, examines the pattern of Xayaburi in setting a benchmark for decisions on mainstream dams and highlights “the urgent need for a truly regional approach to safeguard the Mekong’s future.”

Although International Rivers says dam development is “silencing” the Mekong River, this expert commentary is not intended as a critique or assessment of the MRC Review, said the group in a statement. “Rather, it seeks to draw out key points and discuss their implications for Xayaburi and other dams under construction or consideration on the lower Mekong mainstream and within the region.”

On Wednesday, a panel discussion of the International Rivers report with academic, community and civil society speakers at the Foreign Correspondents’ Club of Thailand in Bangkok provoked comments on the project’s history, its flawed decision-making process, the ongoing campaigns, and Xayaburi’s implications for the ecosystems and people of the Mekong Basin.

International Rivers has described the “build first, study later” approach propagated by the Xayaburi Dam process as “a dangerously irresponsible model for dam-building in the Mekong.”

To read the report, “Review of Design Changes Made for the Xayaburi Hydropower Project,” click .

The Mekong floodplains and delta are among the most agriculturally productive and biologically diverse waterscapes of the world, but sea level rise, land subsidence, and the proposed upstream development of over 126 hydropower dams and extensive delta-based water infrastructure have raised concerns about the potential impacts on the hydrology of the region.

International Rivers is not the only environmental group with concerns about the Mekong River Basin.

A Mekong Delta Study conducted by Denmark’s DHI Consulting Group concluded it was likely “that even the best available fish passage technologies’ may not be able to handle either the massive volume of fish migrations, which during peak periods can reach up to three million fish per hour, or the diversity of migration strategies that characterise the hundreds of fish species in the basin.”

The Mekong River Commission, which governs the dam development of the basin, is also concerned, according to the latest report, State of the Basin Report 2018, released on Tuesday in Vientiane, the Laotian capital city.

Established in 1995, the Mekong River Commission, MRC, is an inter-governmental organization that works directly with the governments of Cambodia, Laos, Thailand, and Vietnam to jointly manage the shared water resources and the sustainable development of the Mekong River.

The organization serves as a regional platform for water diplomacy as well as a knowledge hub of water resources management for the sustainable development of the region.

The MRC report warns, “The apparent permanent modification of mainstream flow regime, the substantial reduction in sediment flows due to sediment trapping, the continuing loss of wetlands, the deterioration of riverine habitats, the growing pressures on capture fisheries, and the limited information sharing on current water development facilities and water use,” are some of the major challenges facing countries in the Mekong Basin.

“We need to address these issues now in order to minimize further environmental harm and protect remaining wetlands and riverine habitats before they are gone, while leveraging the benefits of more secure and increased dry season flows and achieving a more optimal and sustainable development of the Mekong basin,” Dr. An Pich Hatda, chief executive officer of the MRC Secretariat, told nearly 100 officials from the four MRC countries at the launch ceremony.

This latest State of the Basin Report advises that “a more proactive regional approach to basin planning and management, with an enhanced and systematic information sharing mechanism and robust monitoring of river flow must be put in place urgently to address these basin-wide challenges.”

※ 全文及圖片詳見:

作者

如果有一件事是重要的,如果能為孩子實現一個願望,那就是人類與大自然和諧共存。

於特有生物研究保育中心服務,小鳥和棲地是主要的研究對象。是龜毛的讀者,認為龜毛是探索世界的美德。

延伸閱讀

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塞納河畔有人用力拉著繩索,他們可不是在釣魚,而是在「釣電動滑板車」

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塞納河畔有人用力拉著繩索,他們可不是在釣魚,而是在「釣電動滑板車」,這家電動滑板車公司的員工,3個鐘頭從河裡打撈了足足15輛。電動滑板車公司員工表示:「就像那輛的手把卡在岸邊,我們不可能直接把它拉起來,你必須下到水裡,把手把轉向才能將它弄起來。」

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沙塵暴高雄達紅害 興達電廠停機減煤

摘錄自2019年11月1日自由時報報導

中國沙塵暴來襲,高市一連二天空品亮紅燈,中國沙塵暴一路由北往南擴散,造成高雄市區空品不佳,一片霧茫茫,12個測站PM2.5達「紅害」等級,以左營區濃度最高,每立方公尺達60.8微克;PM10最高達橘色等級,以橋頭區濃度最高,每立方公尺達191微克;環保局表示,這是三至五年來最嚴重的一次,啟動緊急應變措施,要求興達電廠停機減煤等。

環保局啟動空品不良緊急應變措施,針對固定污染源執行自主減排及管理措施,除了要求興達電廠停機減煤外,並要求排放量前20大工廠、汽電共生廠、電弧爐業者提前應變,總計降載減排6家,提升防制設備效能11家,增加灑水及清掃頻率二家,停工、停爐或停車四家。

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鳥嘴潭人工湖工程 環保局嚴密監控

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摘錄自2019年11月5日中國時報南投縣報導

位於南投縣烏溪的鳥嘴潭人工湖,尚未開工已開始整地,由於施工期程6年,開挖面積174.2公頃,議長何勝豐擔心將造成空氣、噪音汙染,影響附近居民健康及觀光產業發展;環保局長方信雄表示,如有違失一定開罰,甚至勒令停工。

南投縣議會召開定期大會,方信雄就鳥嘴潭工程專案報告指出,鳥嘴潭人工湖施作面積大,開挖、土方運輸及主體施作,都會造成空氣汙染,並影響交通安全;由於工程期長達6年,雨季來臨時,大量泥沙和其他汙染物隨逕流橫溢,如果沒有適當防範,將會造成河道淤積,損害養殖業和農作物。

何勝豐指出,南投縣是觀光大縣,好山好水和清新的空氣,吸引遊客到訪,鳥嘴潭人工湖工程恐怕會讓草屯鎮烏煙瘴氣,大量土方運輸更波及全縣,影響觀光產業發展,縣府一定要嚴格監控。

方信雄表示,環保局除了現場檢核,並將設置遠端監控系統,即時監控工地狀況,並且使用空拍鳥瞰查核,不容許有汙染環境的情況,如有違失一定嚴格告發取締營造業主。

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摘錄自2019年11月6日中央社報導

據報,中國北方省市兩年前強推「煤改氣」政策後,天然氣價格不斷上漲,今(2019)年漲價潮特別激烈,短短一個月急漲近5成。

綜合陸媒報導,11月4日中國液化天然氣指數為每噸人民幣4,239元(約新台幣1.8萬元),與10月28日的價格指數3,728元相比,上漲逾500元,漲幅超過14%;若與10月1日的價格指數2,912元對比,更上漲46%。另外,10月30日液化天然氣均價為每噸3,840元,31日就上漲到4,750元,單日上漲了近千元,漲幅為23.7%。

2017年底,中國北方省市為減輕冬季空汙,強推煤改氣、煤改電汰換工程,但是部分地區未能供應充足的天然氣,導致一些民眾在嚴冬中因家中沒有暖氣而受凍。最近,中國廣大地區開始邁入冬季之際,供暖問題又開始浮現,面對激烈的漲價潮,農村一般百姓叫苦連天。

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川普政府下月出租阿拉斯加土地 開放挖石油

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摘錄自2019年11月6日中央社外電報導

美國總統川普政府今天(6日)表示,下月將開放標租阿拉斯加州北極地區近400萬英畝(160萬公頃)的土地,供作石油開發用途。政府並承諾未來會開放更多土地以供開發。

路透社報導,美國土地管理局(Bureau of Land Management)宣布12月11日將舉行阿拉斯加國家石油儲備區(National Petroleum Reserve in Alaska)年度石油與天然氣租賃權拍賣。這將是土地管理局為該區舉行的第15場石油租賃權拍賣。

土地管理局也即將完成一項計畫草案,準備推翻前總統歐巴馬時期的保護措施。

相關保護措施讓這塊2300萬英畝(930萬公頃)的國家石油儲備區,有大約一半不得進行石油開發,理由為必須保護北美馴鹿、候鳥,以及對區內原住民和國家而言很重要的其他資源。

川普政府與石油產業則主張,歐巴馬政府計畫的限制過多,必須用新計畫加以取代。

阿拉斯加國家石油儲備區位於阿拉斯加州北坡地區(North Slope)西側,地處普魯赫灣油田(Prudhoe Bay)和庫帕勒克油田(Kuparuk)西方。

近期幾項新發現已促使北坡地區石油開發行動往西擴張。阿拉斯加國家石油儲備區作為單位面積最大的美國聯邦土地,也被視為阿拉斯加州新的產油潛力區。

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