New Year celebrations in Taipei generate less garbage than last year

About 18.2 metric tons of garbage was collected from Taipei's City Hall plaza, where a New Year's Eve countdown party was held Thursday, down 1.27 metric tons or 6.52 percent compared with last year's party, the city's Environmental Protection Department said Friday.

The city government set up 264 big trash bins and 66 recycling stations, and mobilized some 800 sanitation workers for the New Year celebration cleanup.

About 1.16 million people attended the New Year celebrations for 2014 in Taipei, leaving behind 22.63 metric tons of trash, while about 850,000 people attended celebrations a year earlier, producing 14.09 metric tons, according to an estimate on the website of the non-profit Taiwan Environmental Information Center. There is no official figure for the number of people who attended this year's celebration in Taipei.

The Environmental Protection Administration (EPA) estimated Wednesday that the New Year celebrations at 13 venues across Taiwan would produce some 3,169 metric tons of carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions, roughly the amount it would take 8.2 years for Daan Forest Park in Taipei to offset.

About 95 percent of the carbon emissions would come from transportation for those participating, estimated at 2.6 million people by the EPA. About 1 percent to 2 percent would come from fireworks and the rest from cleaning up the trash and providing electricity, according to the EPA.

Taipei was expected to contribute some 1,074 metric tons to the total, said the EPA.

(By Huang Li-yun and Kuo Chung-han)