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Long wait to clean up air is unacceptable


I could not agree more with the comments made in the report (“Clean-air ideas abound but hard choices rare, green groups charge”, July 15) on the heavy roadside pollution caused by Hong Kong buses. Green Power and Friends of the Earth deserve credit for pointing out the core factor behind the serious air pollution here, buses and trucks.

Unfortunately, the government appears to be far too complacent in the face of bus companies and truck drivers’ groups’ opposition to replacing polluting fleets. Hong Kong’s roadside air pollution has reached a serious level. Any sensitive and responsible government would jump at every chance to improve the situation. But it seems our administration is biased towards profit-driven bus companies, which have reportedly threatened to raise fares.

The government should act swiftly to replace the many pre-Euro and Euro I diesel vehicles on our roads.

Should the bus companies decide to raise fares, let Hong Kong people decide if they want to rely on selfish, greedy transport providers.

Rather than giving subsidies to operators to replace their vehicles, why not subsidise people to take other forms of transportation such as the under-utilised West Rail? Bus route rationalisation should also be a priority, as many routes are apparently serving the same districts, for example, Central and Wan Chai.

It is unreasonable for the government to ask Hong Kong people to wait till 2015 to enjoy good air quality. A responsible and visionary administration would not adopt such an attitude.

W. Yeung, Mid-Levels

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