Taiwan is indirectly laying claim to a disputed island area in the South China Sea by stating it conducted environmental tests of the nearby waters.
The Spratly Islands are a disputed area claimed in whole or in part by China, Vietnam, Malaysia and the Philippines. The government in Taipei also lays claim to the area.
The Environmental Protection Administration of Taiwan's Executive Yuan reported its first successful marine water quality monitoring it conducted in the Spratly Islands in September 2010 that showed the water quality at all monitoring points around Taiping Island and Central Reef are qualified with Taiwan's A type standards of marine environmental quality, making it an unpolluted sea area.
The EPA team apparently accomplished the first successful sampling mission September 21-27, 2010, which reportedly represents a historical breakthrough in monitoring South China Sea water quality and expands again Taiwan's space for environmental monitoring.
The EPA inaugurated the Pratas Island Background Station in January 2009 and started monitoring the environmental quality in South China Sea.