The electronic toll collection (ETC) system on freeways saved Taiwan over TW$600m (US$18.7m) last year in energy savings and CO2 cuts, the Taiwan Area National Freeway Bureau has said.

ETC allows road users to pay toll charges electronically without having to slow down to pass through a toll booth, resulting in time and energy savings.

The system was used over 175 million times in 2009, which resulted in fuel savings of nearly 3.45 million litres, CO2 emissions cuts of 8,525t and time savings of 3.294 million hours.

In monetary terms, cuts in fuel consumption saved TW$86.84m (US$2.7m), reduction in CO2 emissions saved TW$8.98m (US$280,000), and TW$487.36m (US$15.2m) in time saved, according to

The bureau now plans to install ETC systems on all freeways by the end of 2012, and expects the system’s usage rate to increase from the current 36% to 65%.

Taiwan, where road transport accounts for the highest CO2 emissions, introduced the ETC system four years ago.