ASE sorry for dumping wastewater
By Joy Lee ,The China Post
December 11, 2013, 12:30 am TWN
TAIPEI, Taiwan -- Advanced Semiconductor Engineering (ASE, 日月光) Inc. yesterday apologized for dumping wastewater containing strong acids and heavy metals from its K7 facility in Kaohsiung City into the Hou-chin River.
ASE's Chief Operating Officer Wu Tien-yu (吳田玉) said that the firm wanted to apologize over the wastewater scandal.
Kaohsiung City's Environmental Protection Bureau discovered recently that the ASE's K7 facility, located in the Nanzih Export Processing Zone (楠梓加工區), had been disposing of wastewater into the Hou-chin River, the main source of irrigation water for farms in two adjacent districts.
According to the bureau, when asked to provide samples of its plant's effluent, ASE even provided officials with fresh water in an attempt to hide their disposal of wastewater into the river.
The bureau fined ASE NT$600,000 for violating the Water Pollution Control Act and ordered the factory to shut down operations.
Wu said that ASE accepted the penalty from the bureau and apologized for causing the officials inconvenience by providing false samples.
“ASE is determined to make appropriate changes and we hope to faithfully follow all guidelines to protect the environment,” said Wu.
Wu also issued a letter to ASE employees regarding the scandal. In the letter, he apologized to the firm's employees over the incident and claimed that the entire system has been improved after inspections by the bureau in October.
According to the bureau, the ASE case will be transferred to the Kaohsiung District Prosecutors Office for further investigation into whether the wastewater placed the health of the public in peril.
EPA Suggests Collecting ASE's 'Illegal' Income
Environmental Protection Administration (EPA) Minister Shen Shu-hung (沈世宏) said any local governments that discover a company conducting illegal wastewater disposal should also confiscate the company's illegal income.
“I really support the Kaohsiung City Government's actions in fining ASE because some local governments do not take such actions to stop companies from illegally dumping wastewater into rivers,” said Shen.
“If the EPA finds out that any local governments intentionally ignore companies that illegally dispose of wastewater in rivers, the administration will cancel the local government's subsidies for environmental protection,” said Shen.