Award Presentation owershadowed by censure action
Black Planet Award bestowed in Taiwan

On Wednesday, May 19, the International ethecon Black Planet Award 2009 was presented to executives of the multinational chemical concern FORMOSA PLASTICS GPOUP. As this prize is actually an award of censure, it is not surprising that the invited representatives of FPG did not appear. Likewise invited but missing at this event was the president of Taiwan, Ma Ying-jeou.

The presentation was therefore carried out by two actors who played the roles of the taiwanese president and the FPG concern patriarch Wang Yung-ching (dec. 2008). The presentation ceremony took place in a cooperative effort between the German based„ethecon - Foundation Ethics & Economics“ and various Taiwanese social and environmental justice organisations, including „Wild at Heart Legal Defense Association“, „Taiwan Watch Institute“, „Mercy on the Earth Taiwan“, „Green Formosa Front“ and the Green Party of Taiwan.

These organisations also presented the attending press representatives water samples from private wells in the vacinity of Formosa operated Renwu plant. These samples show contamination that is 300,000 times higher than the amount permited by state regulations. These samples were to prove that the concern had justly earned the Black Planet Award.

In addition, the organisers read open letters from ethecon and from Taiwan‚s Civil Society to FPG and handed out dossiers concerning some of Formosa‘s offenses. The actual presentation of the Black Planet Award to the accountable management of Formosa will take place during the stockholders’ meeting on June 25. Several environmentalists have announced their intention to also attend the
meeting.

There was an éclat even before the presentation ceremony got started on May 19. The nongovernment organisations already mentioned had rented advertisement space on busses running throughout Taipei. The ads cite the Black Planet Award und point out the „disgrace“ of the FPG concern. In retaliation the concern threatened legal action and managed to have a censure approved. The buses now display a censured version of the ad with the word „disgrace“ pasted over.

Together with the Taiwanese organisations ethecon strongly objects to this censure and asks concerned citizens to join in protest.

Further informations and photos in high resolution:

Bettina Schneider
Phone: +49 (0)211 - 22 95 09 21
E-mail: mailto:bs@ethecon.org

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