(CNA file photo)
Taipei, Dec. 28 (CNA) The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) on Wednesday issued regulations on the development of offshore wind farms in Taiwan, mandating that they must be built at least 1,000 meters away from the natural breeding grounds of white dolphins.
The "Offshore Wind Power Development" regulations, part of the EPA's strategic environmental assessment (SEA) of a proposed offshore wind energy project, are aimed at protecting the critically endangered white dolphin population and Taiwan's fishery resources.
Since the dolphins are generally found at a depth of about 15 meters off the west coast of Taiwan between Miaoli County and Tainan City, it would be advisable to construct wind farms in deeper water further offshore, the EPA said in its SEA.
The regulations were issued amid demands by several environmental groups, which have been calling on the EPA to conduct a more thorough assessment of the west coast areas off central Taiwan.
At a press conference prior to the SEA review, Wu Hui-chun (吳慧君), a researcher of the Taiwan West Coast Conservation Association, expressed concerns that construction noises and the sound of wind turbines might drive away the white dolphins and threaten their survival.
(By Wu Hsin-yun and Ko Lin)