Clean Air Network’s Response to 2016 Policy Address
CAN found it disappointing that in the recent Policy Address delivered by the Chief Executive environmental protection was regarded a secondary issue despite the fact that air quality and environment is crucial for citizens’ health. CAN believes the government should take more active approaches to endorse a sustainable transport and city planning in Hong Kong.
Here are some of the highlights of CAN’s response:
1. The Chief Executive has misled the public that roadside air pollution has reached a satisfactory level. In fact, roadside air quality of Hong Kong has never been safe since 1998, according to the World Health Organization’s standard.
2. In regard with the Chief Executive plans to enhance Hong Kong’s marine logistics, CAN urges the Government or the new Hong Kong Maritime and Port Board to develop new strategies to build a greener and cleaner port, as ship emission has become the largest source of air pollution in Hong Kong.
3. Currently no measures are taken to tackle the transport problem in urban areas. The inefficient use of road space has become the main reason for roadside air pollution, unacceptable traffic speed in urban areas, reduced competitiveness, etc. CAN urges the Government to commission the Fourth Comprehensive Transport Study to enhance the implementation of a sustainable transport management.
On the other hand, the government finally adopted a few measures which CAN has called for years.
1. The Government accepted CAN’s proposal to proceed with the review of the Air Quality Objectives within this year and to set up emission control areas in the waters of Pearl River Delta.
2. We also welcome the Government to promote the use of electric vehicles in public transport system; but at the same time, bike should be adopted as one of the transport solutions for urban traffic problems.
Please see CAN’s full response here.