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Yunlin County Convenes Burning Tower Exhaustion Control Meeting

                               2010-10-06

The Sixth Naphtha Cracker Off-shore Island Industrial Area is the largest petrochemical industrial area in the country. As more factories in the area are built and become operational, more air-polluting activities are in place, contributing to large production of pollutants of all kinds. Among them, the 44 burning towers, 40.7% of all 108 burning towers in Taiwan, account for half of all burning tower exhaustion in Taiwan. These towers are designed for both abnormal and normal exhaustions. They produce exhaustion constantly due to operational needs, and abnormal exhaustion, which produces black smoke, happens only when starting up, shutting down, or emergency situations like stall. The Environment Protection Bureau of Yunlin County since 2008 constantly monitors the exhaustion flows of these burning towers through an automatic exhaustion monitor system, which is the first one of its kind in the country. The measurement data on these burning towers are relayed in real time to the Environment Protection Bureau.

A burning tower is a necessary safety measure in petrochemical production. Gases that may endanger the production safety will be released to the burning tower, but it also produces air pollutants, including sulfate, ammonia, amines, and even butadiene, that may threaten health of people several kilometers away and cause public complaints.

After realizing the burning tower problem, Yunlin Environment Protection Bureau has begun to tackle the burning tower exhaustion issue. In the burning tower exhaustion control meeting, it has made demand in public that the Sixth Naphtha Cracker Industrial Area must comply with the Bureau’s adjusted transmission schedule for exhaustion flow monitoring and install burning tower exhaustion content analysis device, install hotline opened to public concerning the burning tower exhaustion, written reports on pollution content in the exhaustion and impact on air quality to the Bureau, and limit uses of burning towers to production emergency only to prevent abnormal exhaustion from the burning towers.

According to the Environment Protection Bureau, burning tower is necessary for a petrochemical factory, but that doesn’t mean it can be used by factory without any constraint. Use of burning tower may bring negative impact to air quality in adjacent areas over a short period of time, and the Sixth Naphtha Cracker Industrial Area must take this matter seriously and solve these problems and jointly preserve the living quality of the people of Yunlin County.

 

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