Clear The Air News Blog Rotating Header Image

December 7th, 2007:

Hong Kong Issues Warning On Pollution

Reuters – Published: December 7, 2007

HONG KONG: People with heart or lung problems were warned Friday to avoid outdoor activities in Hong Kong as it experienced one of its most polluted days of the year, with the hills across the harbor almost invisible.

Pollution monitoring stations registered “very high” readings in several spots and the Environmental Protection Department said the poor air was expected to continue.

Hong Kong’s air has become increasingly clogged with pollutants from cars, ships, power plants and a booming manufacturing sector across the border in China’s Guangdong province.

Air Pollution Index readings surpassed 101, entering a zone that the Environmental Protection Department considers “very high,” at several sites.

They included the Central business district, which hit 150 by mid-afternoon.

Central Worst Affected As Pollution Soars

Central worst affected as pollution soars

Regina Leung SCMP

Updated on Dec 07, 2007

Pollution, trapped by light winds and hot weather, is expected to remain until wind speeds pick up later in the week.

Smoggy weather and light wind ushered the air pollution index (API) to over 100 in several areas of Hong Kong on Friday, including Central, Causeway Bay and Mong Kok.

Based on roadside station readings, Central recorded the highest API level of 145, compared to 133 in Causeway Bay and 122 in Mongkok.

In the general station readings, Yuen Long, Tung Chung, Tai Po, Central and Western districts also recorded API levels over 100.

Pollutants are trapped under the light wind, and the smoggy conditions favour the photo-chemical formation of ozone in the region, resulting in elevated ozone levels, a spokesman at the environmental department said.

When the level passes 100, the environmental department says people with heart or respiratory illnesses should avoid prolonged stays in areas with heavy traffic. Those who must travel to such congested areas are advised to reduce physical activity.

Environmental Protection Department Emission Figures

 This letter was sent to the Environmental Protection Department (EPD) by Jim Middleton, a member of Clear The Air, in relation to the misleading figures quoted on the EPD website regarding per capita CO2 emissions. The letter was sent on the 7th of December.

Dear [EPD],

The Environmental Protection Department (EPD) chooses to disguise emission figures by using a per capita emission for CO2 and then comparing the rest of the world to show Hong Kong in favorable light.

That is ridiculous.

The Hong Kong population has a cocoon of only 154.4 m2 of space each in which to breathe the C02 and pollutants emitted. The above site shows Greenhouse weighted emissions at 6.5 tonnes per capita of Hong Kong population in 2006.

That is 42 kgs emissions per m2 per Hong Kong person per year.

You state Hong Kong emissions are lower than those developed countries shown below.

The EPD report below lists Australia at 27 tonnes emissions per capita.

In Australia each person has 374,800m2 of space compared to Hong Kong’s 154.4 m2 each.

That is 0.072 kgs emissions per m2 per Australian person per year.

I suggest the Government gets real on this misleading method of presenting Hong Kong’s greenhouse emissions.


James Middleton