The government has planned a budget of $ 250.7 billion NTD for water construction projects in the forward-looking infrastructure program. However, none of the budget is for improving the quality of water. Rivers like Pingtung's Donggang River, which is heavily polluted by livestock waste, should be a priority.
With animal waste floating on the surface, the Donggang River in Pingtung is mocked as "the river of feces" by local residents. Over recent years, almost nothing has been done to stop the river from being polluted by livestock waste water. Recently, the government planned a budget of NT$ 250.7 billion for water environmental construction projects in its forward-looking infrastructure program. However, to civil groups' disappointment, projects to improve river water quality are nowhere to be seen.
== CHOU KO-JEN Dir., Taiwan Blue Donggang Stream Preservation Assn. ==
In Pingtung's Wandan Township, cow pats are stacked up high in the river.The government did inspect several livestock breeding businesses. However, interestingly, before the inspectors came, all these businesses seemed to know that they should use five times the amount of underground water to wash the river course clean to avoid being caught and fined.
== LAI CHIEN-HSIN Dir., Water Resources Agency==
The infrastructure plan for water-related environmental construction is only a part of our water conservancy projects.
The Fongshan Reservoir, whose water comes from the Donggang River, provides drinking water to areas in Kaohsiung when there is a water emergency. As the river is polluted, affecting water use across Kaohsiung and Pingtung, civil groups think that improvement of the river water quality should be first included in the infrastructure plan.
== HUANG YUNG-PING Dep-Dir., the 7th River Management Office, WRA==
We have been working to improve the river. Improving water quality requires time, we are unable to make it to the best quality within six years.
They also think that the government should use part of the budget to improve the common problem of water pipes leaking and wasting water.
== LEE KEN-CHENG Dir., Citizen of the Earth==
Every day, 1.4 million tons of water is wasted through leakage. If the problem is so serious, then the government should plan a bigger budget to deal with it. Places with high water leakage or with a lack of water should be the first priority.
Civil groups said that the infrastructure plan lacks careful planning and social communication. They asked the government to re-evaluate the plan, and widen public participation to meet the real needs of people.
TRANSLATED BY ARIEL HSIEH
記者 王柔婷 孟昭權 高雄報導
GOVT. MISSES PINGTUNG RESIDENTS' CLEAN WATER NEEDS|前瞻水資源建設 民團籲優先改善水質
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