The Taiwanese Legislature passed the Indoor Air Quality Management Act Nov. 8, making Taiwan the second country after South Korea to enact such a regulation.
Shieh Yan-ru, head of the Environmental Protection Administration’s Department of Air Quality Protection & Noise Control, said the act, part of President Ma Ying-jeou’s environmental protection platform, is a step toward ensuring the health and well-being of the people.
“The passage of this legislation, which is an extension of earlier outdoor air quality regulations, shows that the government is determined to improve the indoor environment for the people,” Shieh said.
The act, which will take effect one year after promulgation by the president, stipulates that owners, managers or employers of mass gathering spaces are responsible for maintaining indoor air quality in their venues, and that those who fail to meet standards will be given a period of improvement or face fines between NT$50,000 (US$1,665) and NT$250,000 for repeat violations.
The EPA will map out detailed guidelines on indoor air quality control over the next year, including air quality standards, testing measures, management procedures and training programs, Shieh said. Certain public venues will be asked to install air monitoring devices and report the results periodically, according to Shieh, who urged owners, managers and employers to make preparations for the new legislation.
According to World Health Organization statistics, poor indoor air quality may pose a risk to the health of over half of the world’s population, and nearly 2 million people die prematurely every year from illnesses attributable to indoor air pollution.