Press Release – Town Planning Board did not wait for Paul Chan to destroy the Sai Kung Country Parks
Despite objections from green groups and conservation experts, Government has given in to the Heung Yee Kuk with large development zones for small houses inside country parks.
During today’s meeting, the Board agreed to publish the first 2 draft Outline Zoning Plans in the Sai Kung Country Parks. Based on the land zoned for small house development (v-zones) in Pak Lap and Hoi Ha, it is estimated that more than 3,000 small houses may be built inside the country park once the full 320ha of all 19 enclaves is zoned. The community will have two months to object and tell the Heung Yee Kuk to take their hands off our country parks.
Hoi Ha (S/NE-HH/1) is a village of 8ha with 34 houses adjacent to the Hoi Ha Marine Park: 80 more houses can be built on the new v-zone and green belt ‘expansion’ area.
The second zoning approved today is for Pak Lap (S/SK-PL/1), a village of 6ha with 20 houses: 72 houses can be added despite the lack of access (oops, not counting the illegal road built recently).
The flood of new small houses will destroy the Sai Kung Country Parks. There has been no environmental impact assessment of the cumulative impact of the zoning for small houses, nor has the Country and Marine Parks Board considered the combined impacts of these developments on the Sai Kung Country Parks.
There are around 500 houses in the ‘inner’ Sai Kung Country Park – past the gate at Pak Tam Chung. Creating development zones for 3,000 new small houses will increase demand for transport and increase road traffic during construction and after occupation when each house can have 3 flats, and each dwelling can have two vehicle permits. This creates the need for road widening and improvements works such as street lights affecting the entire inner country park.
More importantly, Small or Village House developments are officially known as ‘New Territories Exempted Houses’ – the most destructive form of development in Hong Kong. We note just a few “exemptions”:
1. There is no sewerage and village houses depend on percolation through the ground from septic tanks and soak away pits, contaminating underground and surrounding waters.
2. Storm drains are laid at random by private contractors for each house separately through the surrounding country park to nearby waters.
3. Expedient connections from baths, and often kitchens and toilets pollute the storm drains, and nearby waters.
4. No access, roads, paths or parking spaces are provided forcing residents to resort to unlawful road construction and illegal occupation of government land in country parks.
5. Each house is either exempted from site formation or developers construct their own platforms.
6. Excavation, land filling, platform and small house construction lacks quality controls. Land formation, excavation and slope stabilization is random and of poor quality extending well into the country park.
7. The location of each house is subject to application and ownership of previous paddy fields rather than based on well planned village layouts. This leads to chaotic developments as can be seen in all village environs in Hong Kong.
8. And we have yet to explain the environmental pollution of the actual construction of individual houses by village contractors.
Our “Pick It Up” campaign promotes a positive attitude towards picking up litter. We hope that everyone in Hong Kong can work together to make “Pick It Up” a habit. Keeping Hong Kong tidy and clean, no longer about ‘not littering’, but about ‘picking up’ after oneself! If you are interested to collaborate with or have any idea, please contact us via email [email protected] or call Ms Debby Chan 31043107 for following up!
「拾荒救地球」運動希望令市民能正面的思考垃圾問題，當我們見到垃圾時不要只是抱怨或投訴，而是把它撿起來回收或丟到垃圾桶。七十年代我們有垃圾蟲叫人「不要亂拋垃圾」，今天我們身體力行的呼籲人執垃圾。「拾荒救地球」是商店、品牌公司甚至每個人都可以參與的運動。如果你有興趣跟參與我們的活動或有任何想法，請發電郵到 [email protected] 或 致電 3104 3107 與Debby Chan 聯絡！
Press Release – 6 th March 2013
Living Lamma volunteers collected and sorted waste found in Pak Kok beach on Lamma Island by brand label. After 3 clean ups, 1112 plastic bottles with 761 different identifiable brand labels were found.
VITA WATER is the brand which has the most bottles (23% of all identifiable bottles) littering the beach surveyed. In second place is BONAQUA with 13% of bottles found. In third place was COOL Water with 11% of identifiable bottles found. A full report is attached.
Jo Wilson, campaigner at Living Lamma explained, “I was not surprised. People always think garbage on the beach comes drifting down the Pearl River Delta. We chose to monitor this beach as the rubbish we found there in the past largely contained local brands. Our findings show that beach litter is our own problem. Many people don’t realize that litter on the streets and slopes will end up in our seas, and back onto our beaches.”
Paul Zimmerman, CEO, Designing Hong Kong added, “We hope that brand names like VITA will take action and use their labeling to remind consumers to dispose bottles properly. At the same time, the Hong Kong community should consider adding a recycling charge onto plastic bottles and not just glass bottles, to promote recovery and return for recycling use.”
Living Lamma and Designing Hong Kong see the “Brand on the Beach” award event as part of a growing “Pick It Up” attitude in Hong Kong. People are responding to a positive attitude which promotes: “Don’t just look at the trash or complain about it, pick it up.” Last summer, members of the public helped clear up plastic pellets after the Vicente Typhoon. The AFCD has removed waste bins from Country Parks and asks people to carry their waste out of the parks. An increasing number of people are getting involved in coastal clean-up campaigns.
“Next, we hope fast food chains will ask patrons to return their food tray to a cleaning station before leaving. Maybe they can consider discount coupons in return. It is no longer about ‘not littering’, but about ‘picking up’ garbage. A campaign everyone including retailers and brand companies can help with.” Paul Zimmerman concluded.
The next clean up on Lamma will be on Sunday April 14th, anyone who is interested please send email to Jo at [email protected]
新聞稿 – 2013年3月6日
在可辨認出其品牌的沙灘垃圾膠樽之中，維他純蒸餾水共佔百分之廿三，贏得冠軍。亞軍由佔百分之十三的飛雪礦物質水所奪; Cool 礦泉水以輕微之差(百分之十一)得季軍。詳情可參閱完整報告。