By: Matthew W. Chou
Living in an island state that has already felt the impacts of climate change, the people of Taiwan care deeply about the environment and understand that our living world is a precious, common resource shared with all other peoples across the globe. Building on the Paris Agreement, and looking to the post-2050 era, Taiwan has actively encouraged all domestic stakeholders to take climate action, reduce carbon emissions and strengthen our commitment to supporting developing countries by any means we can.
In June 2015, Taiwan passed the Greenhouse Gas Reduction and Management Act, which set out a series of five-year regulatory carbon reduction targets designed to lower Taiwan’s greenhouse gas emissions to 50 percent of 2005 levels by 2050. Subsequently, we have also taken numerous adaptation actions related to such issues as water management, public health, agriculture, and land use. In response to the international trend of energy transformation, Taiwan has also introduced a Green Finance Action Plan that is facilitating innovation in the field of green technology.
Through good environmental governance, early warning systems, projects promoting green technology and energy efficiency and green finance and technological innovation, Taiwan has already proven its expertise and demonstrated its willingness to contribute to climate action. This despite being excluded from international climate talks and lacking opportunities to pledge our commitment to supporting global climate action.
To date, Taiwan has been denied the opportunity to submit its ambitious Nationally Determined Contributions (NDC) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) Secretariat for purely political reasons. This means that the system will always be missing a piece whenever global emissions and climate actions are tallied up.
We call on all parties to look beyond political considerations and support Taiwan’s professional, pragmatic and constructive participation in the 25th Session of the Conference of the Parties (COP25) under the UNFCCC to be held in Santiago, Chile, this December. Taiwan can help—work with Taiwan to promote global efforts to combat climate change!
Matthew W. Chou is
Taipei Liaison Office in RSA