Finland praises Taiwan as a world leader in recycling

Finnish flagship newspaper Helsingin Sanomat compliments Taiwan's recycling system in report

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Finnish newspaper compliments Taiwan's recycling system (Taipei Representative Office in Finland photo)

Finnish newspaper compliments Taiwan's recycling system (Taipei Representative Office in Finland photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — The largest Finnish newspaper, Helsingin Sanomat (HS), published a double-page spread on Wednesday (Jan. 15) extolling Taiwan's achievements in recycling and recommending that the European Union (EU) and Finland learn from the island nation.

The HS noted that Taiwan used to carry the name "garbage island," as urbanization and the rising consumption of consumer goods generated tremendous plastic waste within the country. However, the Taiwanese government proposed revolutionary recycling policies in the '90s that successfully reduced the amount of trash and transformed it into a world leader in the field of waste management, reported CNA.

The article compared the current situation in Taiwan with that in Finland, observing that the former's total recycling rate has reached 55 percent, with the average Taiwanese producing 850 grams of trash per day. The figures for Finland are 42 percent and 930 grams, respectively, putting the country in the middle of the pack among EU countries when it comes to recycling ability and waste reduction.

The report also mentioned that the EU has updated its recycling targets. If Finland is to comply with the new standard, it will have to sort its plastic waste more efficiently and increase the total amount of waste recycled.

Chang Hsiu-chen (張秀禎), head of Taiwan Representative Office in Finland, told CNA that Taiwan and Finland have been cooperating on sustainable economic development in recent years. Last June, the Finnish government invited Taiwan's Environmental Protection Administration to join the World Circular Economy Forum held in Helsinki, further strengthening the bilateral corporation on environmental issues.