|| The west coast of Taiwan is enriched with biological resources. The areas are the economic development sites with highly industrialized activities and densely population. The government attempts to promote the sites for the establishment of marine protected areas (MPA) because of the existence of Chinese White Dolphin (Sousa Chinensis) which is the most important issues against the sustainable development of economy. Thus, the present study was initiated to assess the marine environmental quality (MEQ) in the west coast of Taiwan. The research consists of the integral monitoring assessments of rivers, estuaries and the marine areas. This work collected, reviewed and analyzed the environmental monitoring data from industrial environmental impact assessment reports and governmental documents for the evaluation of spatial and temporal trends of the west coast areas over the last ten year. The assessment is required to understand the possible interactive problems between the marine protected areas and the marine environmental quality prior to the establishment of MPA acts.|
The present work consists of the subsection of coastal areas ranging from Hsinchu Country to Taichung Harbour. Ten annual monitoring data including the water quality or sediments of rivers, estuaries, and marine were assessed for the spatial and temporal trends of physical, chemical and biological changes over the years. The approaches for assessing the sites included the geographic information system (GIS) spatial analysis method and linear regression of monitoring data. The levels of pollution were also evaluated by using the river pollution index (RPI). The effect of habitat suitability index (HSI) was also calculated.
The results of river water quality assessment showed that the Ke-ya-si, Jhong-gang river, and Nan-gan river were seriously polluted with RPI＞6. The river seiment contaminants (Cu、Ni) were significantly increased in the Ke-ya-si and Jhong-gang river. The water quality of Taichung Port drainage showed serious pollution with low dissolved oxygen (DO), high concentrations of ammonia nitrogen, and high counts of coli-forms. The Taichung Port drainage sediment contaminants (As、Cu、Hg、Zn) had higher than the average of EPA guidelines. This could be resulting from the significant point source of industries pollutants discharged into the river. The significant amounts of waste water discharged into ocean could cause the impacts to the marine environment.
The present study demonstrated the impacts to the river monitoring site although the ocean water quality monitoring contaminants were found without signicant changes in all time. This suggests that the ocean water quality monitoring sites were inconsistently sampled at 4 nm away from the coast which caused the dilution of contaminant concentrations and affecting the monitoring effectiveness. The sediment contaminants in Taichung Port monitoring site showed with the exception of appearing unusual change. The results also showed that there is lack of bio-monitoring program carried out in rivers, estuary, and marine that are imperatively needed to resolve the ineffective sampling protocol implemented in the current coastal environmental monitoring. This is owing to the non unified for authorization between the municipality and environmental bureau. The Canada Ocean Acts on assessing the water and sediment and bio-monitoring in rivers, estuary, and marine as a whole concept were compared with the present study.
Finally, the relevant authorities should implement river remediation to improve the pollution and thereby to maintain the sustainability of marine environment. It is needed to establish an integral monitoring program consisting of water and sediment and bio-monitoring in rivers, estuary, and marine to better predict the marine environmental quality. Also the integral and long-term monitoring program should ensure to predict the changes of west coastal and to achieve the effectiveness of marine management.