Taichung Power Plant fails third checkup this year, fined NT$20 million

The coal-fired power plant was handed a record-high fine for releasing water that was hazardous to health

Taichung Fire Power Plant

Taichung Fire Power Plant (Wikimedia Commons photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News)—Taiwan Power Company’s plant in Longjing, Taichung, was fined NT$20 million (about US$648,000) by Taichung’s Environmental Protection Bureau (EPB) on Monday (April 15), after failing to meet sampling inspections three times in a row this year.

EPB chief Wu Chih-chao (吳志超) said the level of nitrate-nitrogen in the water released by the power plant exceeded the permitted amount of 50ml per liter, according to environmental protection law. The inspection result on March 21 was 105ml per liter.

The NT$20 million punishment broke the country’s record for the highest environmental fine handed to a state-owned enterprise. Wu said the company must make improvements within a limited period according to the Water Pollution Control Act, reported Economic Daily News

Taiwan Power Company spokesperson Hsu Tsao-hua (徐造華) apologized for not meeting standards and promised to work toward decreasing air and water pollution with practical plans of action, according to China Times’ report.

"Excessive concentrations of nitrate-nitrogen or nitrite-nitrogen in drinking water can be hazardous to health, especially for infants and pregnant women," according to the U.S.-based Water Research Center.