Tuesday, August 07, 2018

This is why the DPP is not winning any popularity contests

Two friends well met on my early morning ride

DPP, KMT, whoever runs the government has the same attitude toward hoi polloi (FocusTw):
Minister of Economic Affairs Shen Jong-chin (沈榮津) said Thursday that the government will continue to "negotiate" with residents of Rueifang District in New Taipei to dispel their fears about the planned reopening and expansion of a decommissioned coal-fired power plant in the area.

"Our responsibility is to negotiate, negotiate and negotiate with them, with compassion, before going ahead with the plan," Shen said at a news conference, when asked about the government's plans for the controversial Shen'ao Power Plant.
"Negotiate" in this case means simply wear them down until they shut up, and then build a power plant that the nation does not need and which will hurt both the local and global environments. I wish it were hard to find public policy-making more moronic than this, but most nations run their energy policies this way.

The image above shows a bridge under construction to enable the 3 to bypass the city of Dongshih (google map link). There are also new roads going in around the central Taiwan science park. Why this construction? Because the city of Taichung, with all the many urgent needs facing it, chose to spend millions putting in these roads in part to service anticipated new traffic to the idiotic flower exhibition center. This google maps link still shows the old horse racing area in Houli, a stretch of grass that has been destroyed to put in the flower exhibition, which will be permanent. It will demand power to cool it, permanently, and water to keep it watered, permanently.

The stoopid, it burns.

Imagine if, instead of spending all that public money on this fruitless, idiotic project, the government had instead decided to spend it on putting solar panels on public buildings and handing out free solar panels to anybody who wanted until the budget ran out. Instead of subsidizing an urgently needed hi-tech industry with massive panel orders the government decided to subsidize the gangster-ridden construction industry by spraying yet more concrete across the countryside.

The lack of imagination is terrifying. A chance to change the future for everyone and spare northern Taiwan the re-opened Shenao Coal Plant, and instead, we get another cookie cutter construction-industrial state project. Nothing changes....
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RH Mitchell said...

I know that definition of "negotiate." It's the same one my bosses use when they "negotiate" my job duties with me.

Anonymous said...

The reserve power bounces under 6% all the time. I dunno, but after last year's mistaken power outage, I have a lot misgivings about electricity in Taiwan. The numbers speak for themselves. Taiwan needs more electricity generation yesterday.

And unfortunately, due to China, the air is terrible these days during the winters.

From my perspective, I would have started the Fourth Nuclear Power Plant and then used the savings on cost to build plenty of solar and wind without worrying about the high cost. But right now, there is no political will (amazingly) to run it, and even the New Taipei KMT candidate pooh poohs nuclear's power. In a country with cleaner air, it might make sense to avoid coal. But in Taiwan, it's ridiculous to look at 7% of the air pollution (electrical generation) and ignore 35% of it (cars and trucks).

For people that truly want better air quality in Taiwan: it's the cars and trucks which cause 1/3 of pollution especially European spec cars that are efficient but spew very strong smelling fumes and older diesel trucks. Air quality in the Taipei area gets really bad when everyone is driving. It's ridiculous given how amazing both MRT and bus service here with many not that busy locations getting service less than every 5 minutes.

Appropriate taxes on diesel and gas would be a good place to start. US taxes on gasoline can be more than 10x what they are here.