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Campaigner trying to bring green revolution to Taiwan

When Grace Kan was growing up in Taiwan, there were more fish in the rivers, frogs hopping around and days full of clear blue skies.

While spending time hiking in college she realised it wasn't enough to just enjoy nature but that she needed to help protect it.

She's one member of a growing movement - young people, farmers, scholars and others - trying to protect Taiwan from further destruction as its economy continues to expand.

Despite having less than half-a-percent of the world's population, Taiwan is one of its biggest polluters. Its economic growth has come at great cost to the environment.

Signs of the damage are increasingly apparent in the water, air, and land, especially with climate change. Deadly landslides are becoming more common, especially in areas stripped of virgin forest and overdeveloped.

Economic development has been the top priority for Taiwan since Ms Kan's parents and grandparents' time, even when it caused environmental destruction. She believes this mindset must change.

Along with other campaigners, she is raising public awareness and calling for a new approach.

But it's a challenge to change the old mentality that says Taiwan must build polluting factories and coral reef-destroying resort hotels if the country is to prosper.

She says the government must take bolder measures to protect the overall environment, not just small steps to save individual species, which are not really working.

If it doesn't, the environmental damage will only get worse, she says.

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