Mark Stocker:台灣是世界前三名的資源回收大國,為什麼國際形象始終沒跟上?

2017/08/05

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政府與民間企業若能攜手行銷台灣的環保成果,不但有助於打造台灣的國際形象,也能為台灣的品牌、產品與服務創造商機。

當有人提及引領全球綠色經濟的國家時,通常我們的第一印象會是德國,而西歐和北歐國家也經常會被視為回收、永續經營和綠色產業的領導者。但其實,台灣早己悄悄地成為全球環保標竿的前三大國家之一,超越了大部份西歐和北歐國家的資源回收表現,而這個成果卻鮮為人知。

若你對此抱持疑問,也無可厚非。儘管台灣推動綠色經濟的成效卓越,但國家的名聲並沒有跟上環保政策和成果的進度。許多外國人對台灣環境的認知仍停留在「經濟成長」比「環境保護」更重要的年代,聯想到的是昔日「垃圾島」的聲譽,而不是近幾十年台灣為環保努力的成果。缺乏宣揚環保成果的企圖心,可以說是台灣無法擺脫過去的形象的因素之一。

▋該是宣揚台灣資源回收成就的時候了!

你知道台灣的資源回收效率高居世界第二,僅次於德國嗎?台灣民眾平均每天製造0.4公斤的廢棄物,遠低於現在的世界平均1.2公斤,相較於20年前的1.14公斤減少了許多。台灣的垃圾掩埋量佔總廢棄物量不到2%,而以前的垃圾掩埋場現在成功轉型為公園或社區活動中心。台灣的工業廢棄物回收率則高達80%,資源回收業的成長速度也相當的驚人,在10年內,登記立案的回收公司從100家快速成長到2,000家。

台灣的資源回收業已經從「撿破爛」變身成為蓬勃發展的產業和回收界的菁英,但是台灣在國際環保界的名聲始終沒有趕上。台灣民眾會認為德國是資源回收大國,可是即使國際媒體近幾年報導了台灣的環保成效,卻少有德國民眾會知道台灣的改變。這十年來的轉變,大家都參與其中,卻經常無法完全領會這些成績對於台灣的重要性,或看到台灣帶領全球進入下一個資源回收革命的發展機會。

這樣的狀況也反映了台灣近幾十年來面臨的許多挑戰,雖然台灣人才濟濟,而且擁有走在創新尖端的公司和世界級的工程技術,但國家的綠色實力在世界舞台上仍沒沒無聞。國際社會若是看不到台灣的環保成果,不只相當可惜,也可能讓台灣的環保技術與服務供應商失去領先世界的機會,錯失預估將在2020年前高達數兆美元價值的潛在市場


台灣的資源回收其實相當成功,不該妄自菲薄。

▋世界級的環保專家形象

在這件事情上,台灣不該保持過份謙虛的態度。如果想在環保技術與服務市場佔有一席之地,就必須在國際市場中打造台灣身為環保和永續發展領導者的形象。

若要提升台灣的能見度,政府該打造並執行長期的行銷和公關策略,讓世界各地看到台灣政府與企業的環保實力。我們近幾年看到《華爾街日報》將台灣稱為「垃圾處理天才」的報導,就是打造國際級環保專家形象正確的一步。但如果台灣想要像德國一樣享有環保大國的盛名,需要投入更多的資源和時間。

同時,台灣的環保企業必須更有自信地,將自家的服務與能力行銷到海外市場,建立知名度。前一陣子,遠東新世紀因為開發了世界首創海洋垃圾回收鞋的技術,被稱為「台灣之光」,但獲得此資訊的人仍大多侷限於台灣民眾。我們必須讓台灣環保技術的創舉成為全球眾所皆知的消息。

台灣這場令人讚嘆的資源回收轉型仍在進行中。如果能趁著台灣環保佔上風的此時,開始實施更全面的管理政策,並嘗試新的尖端科技,就能成為全球綠色經濟的領頭羊。我們必須以台灣資源回收的成果和持續發展為榮,堅持不懈地讓世界看見台灣的環保實力。

本文為中英雙語呈現,以下為英文原文:

Taiwan is a global leader in recycling. It's a shame so few seem to know it.

A concerted effort by the government and private enterprises to market Taiwan's green achievements abroad would not only benefit the nation's image, it would also create more business opportunities for Taiwan's brands, products and services.

When one is asked to identify the nations that lead the world in the greening of their economies, countries such as Germany tend to spring to mind for most of us. In fact, it is generally the nations of Western Europe and Scandinavia that are recognized as de facto leaders in recycling, sustainability, and green in-dustry. Unbeknownst to many, however, Taiwan has quietly surpassed a majority of these countries in its rates of recycling, putting the island nation in the top three of most global benchmarks.

You might be skeptical, and if you are I don't blame you. For all that Taiwan is achieving in the greening of its economy, the island does not have much of a reputation for green leadership. The truth is that many still associate Taiwan with a dirty past. A time when economic performance took precedent over envi-ronmental protection. Unfortunately for Taiwan, the nation's reputation remains stuck in this past, due in part to Taiwan's lack of assertiveness in marketing its recent achievements.

▏Taiwan is a world leader in recycling. It's time for more people to know it.

Did you know? Taiwan has the world's second highest effective recycling rate, second only to Germany. Taiwan citizens produce on average 0.4kg of waste per day, down from 1.14kg two decades ago, and far below today's global average of 1.2kg per person. Taiwan has reduced the amount of waste entering land-fills to less than 2% of total generated waste, converting former landfill sites into parks and community centers. Taiwanese industry, meanwhile, recycles an impressive 80% of its own industrial waste and the island now boasts more than 2,000 registered recycling companies, up from fewer than 100 a decade ago.

Taiwan has gone from laggard to leader in the span of a decade. Unfortunately, Taiwan's reputation for leadership in recycling has not kept pace. While the average citizen of Taiwan will cite Germany as the standard-bearer of recycling, there are, despite the recent news coverage, few Germans who would say the same of Taiwan. And, in spite of the fact that all of us in Taiwan have participated in the transformation over the last decade, too few of us here fully appreciate the significance of these achievements, or recognize the opportunity for Taiwan to lead the world into the next era of recycling.

The situation today reflects many of the same challenges Taiwan has been facing for decades. Whilst the nation has highly innovative companies, a talented workforce, and world-class process engineering, the country's capabilities continue to remain little known to those outside of Taiwan. A lack of international awareness of Taiwan's leadership in recycling would not only be a shame, it would be a missed oppor-tunity for Taiwan's green technology and service providers to lead the way in what is predicted to become a multi-trillion USD market by 2020.

▏Taiwan must market itself as a global steward of green

Now is not the time to be humble. If Taiwan wishes to win any significant part of the green technology and environmental services market, the country will need to be known by citizens all over the world as a global steward of green and sustainable practices. To raise Taiwan's profile, the government should in-troduce a decade-long, global public relations campaign designed to raise awareness for both national and corporate-level achievements in recycling and sustainable practices. Recent news coverage like that in the Wall Street Journal is a step in the right direction, but much more will be needed if Taiwan desires to attain Germany's reputation.

At the same time, Taiwanese corporations involved in all aspects of the green economy must themselves be more proactive in building exposure for their services and capabilities in overseas markets. Stories such as Far Eastern New Century's involvement in the development of the Adidas shoe made from recycled ocean waste, which is known only here in Taiwan, must become common knowledge to people around the world.

With Taiwan's remarkable recycling transformation well under way, we are in an ideal position to move ahead of other nations with the implementation of ever more comprehensive management policies and with trials of new and advanced technologies. Initiatives put in place by our current government have the potential to turn Taiwan into the world's greenest economy within the next decade. We should take pride in what has been achieved and what will be achieved in the coming years. We must also have the conviction to ensure the world knows it too.

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