Clear The Air News Blog Rotating Header Image

March 3rd, 2008:

Survey Reveals Electricity Waste

Scarlett Chiang – Updated on Mar 03, 2008 – SCMP

Hong Kong people waste electricity, a survey released yesterday shows, with one in five often forgetting to switch off lights and a third of them leaving televisions on and unwatched. The survey, commissioned by Friends of the Earth, canvassed 1,500 people last October.

While 88 per cent of those polled believed energy conservation improved air pollution, 71 per cent thought Hongkongers wasted electricity. Some 302 respondents said they forgot to switch off lights occasionally or frequently and 325 people said they left unwatched televisions switched on, sometimes or all the time.

About one in three interviewees left televisions on standby mode when they went to sleep.

About 74 per cent said they supported government recommendations about keeping air conditioning at 25.5 degrees Celsius, but 41 per cent maintained room temperatures below 25.5 degrees in summer. About 20 per cent of people said they woke up at night feeling cold occasionally or frequently when air conditioning was on. When asked what the biggest obstacle to energy conservation was, 412 people said it was “fondness for comfort” and 183 people said it was “dislike of annoyances”.

Friends of the Earth environmental affairs officer Angus Wong Chun-yin said survey results showed Hong Kong people were only paying lip service to saving energy.

Hong Kong Air Pollution Reaches Very High Levels

HK air pollution reaches very high levels

Staff reporters – Updated on Mar 03, 2008 – SCMP

Hong Kong’s air pollution on Monday once again reached very high levels with the roadside station in Causeway Bay recording a worrying level of 153.

Readings taken at Central and Mongkok have reached 148 and 122, respectively, local radio reported.

General stations have also recorded high or very high levels. Readings done in Sham Shui Po reached as high as 116, while those at Kwai Chung were 111, and reading at Central and Western peaked at 110.

The government said people with heart or respiratory illnesses should reduce physical activity and outdoor activities.

Experts say the main factors causing air pollution in Hong Kong are industries, power generation, construction work and an increasing number of motor vehicles.

Pollution also drifts across to Hong Kong from southern China. With the mainland experiencing rapid economic growth, worsening pollution from factories in Guangdong impacts on the territory.

Air pollution is also affecting Hong Kong’s reputation as an international hub. Regional headquarters and offices set up by overseas companies in the territory have said air pollution was one of the top three issues which the government needed to address, a Census and Statistics Department report found.

An American Chamber of Commerce survey has also said the deteriorating quality of the environment was affecting member companies’ continued investment in Hong Kong.

Other studies show that poor air quality was costing companies millions of dollars each year in medical costs and lost productivity.

Clear the Air, is a volunteer environmental group, has warned that air pollution threatens Hong Kong’s public health, as well as its economic and social well being.

“Many districts in Hong Kong are failing to meet statutory health standards for air quality, and the associated health costs to individuals, businesses and society are estimated to cost billions of dollars each year,” it said.

Government projections show that the air quality will continue to deteriorate in the future. This is because of the growth in motor vehicles in Hong Kong and in the Pearl River region.

Air pollution reaches highest level of year in Hong Kong

03.03.08 07:16 – Trend News

Hong Kong was wrapped in dense smog Monday as air pollution in the notoriously hazy city of 6.9 million reached its highest level of the year so far. ( dpa )

People with heart disease or respiratory illnesses were warned to avoid outdoor activities as readings on the city’s air pollution index topped 150 for the first time in 2008.

The highest readings were in the Causeway Bay shopping district where a reading of 155 was recorded while pollution levels in Central and Mongkok in Kowloon were also very high.

Any reading over 100 on the index, which measures pollutants at street level, is considered high while anything in the region of 150 upwards is considered very high.

Monday’s smog came as a stark reminder that pollution is a major issue in Hong Kong which will in August host the equestrian events of the 2008 Beijing Olympics.

The Swiss team in January withdrew its dressage team because it fears conditions in Hong Kong in the height of summer will too much for horses to cope with.

Hong Kong’s government has taken measures to try to reduce pollution but much of it blows down from factories in neighbouring southern China.

Pollution levels have worsened sharply in the past decade with smog so thick on some days of the year that it is impossible to see from one side of the city’s landmark Victoria Harbour to the other.