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The Origin of Water Pollution Control Fee

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In recent years, the "polluter-pays principle" or PPP has become widely accepted among the public, extending to environmental management and pollution emissions. Under this principle, polluters are required to pay fees based on the amount of pollution they release, creating economic incentives to restrain the discharge of pollutants into water bodies. By implementing PPP in conjunction with administrative controls, the goal is to reduce pollution emissions and accelerate the improvement of water body environments.

The spirit of water pollution control fees is to restrict polluting behavior through financial means. Municipal governments are responsible for constructing sewage systems, and a major part of reducing the impact of domestic wastewater is through increasing the coverage and access to public sewage systems. Levying water pollution fees on households can be perceived as a punitive measure.

Therefore, the Legislative Yuan revised and promulgated Articles 11 and 44 of the Water Pollution Control Act on June 13, 2018 in accordance with presidential order, stipulating that "local governments shall collect water pollution control fees from households that are located in the sewage system zones announced in accordance with the Sewerage Law and fail to discharge sewage into sewage systems." The revisions also authorize local governments to set forth regulations for charging and collecting said fees, which should all be dedicated to sewage system construction and improvement of domestic wastewater and other relevant purposes.

Ministry of Environment