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Panel on Transport and Panel on Environmental Affairs

Legco panels discussed reducing or reorganizing bus trips this morning.

Legco panels discussed reducing or reorganizing bus

Clear the Air, Edited by Ryan Chan

22nd Jan, 2010

Bus is one of the main sources of air pollution in Hong Kong. According to the document of Legislative Council, on a territorial basis, franchised buses accounted for about 6% of respirable suspended particulates and 11% of the nitrogen oxides of road transport emission in Hong Kong in 2008. At busy traffic corridors, they could account for up to 40% of the total vehicular emissions. Therefore reducing or reorganizing bus trips is an effective way to mitigate the roadside air pollution and hence the health risk to the people. Thats why Panel on Transport and Panel on Environmental Affairs met together to discuss about the issue.

In this meeting, many Legislative members made suggestions to the issue. They knew that reorganizing bus trips can help to reduce air pollution in Hong Kong. For example, Mr. Wong Kwok-hing mentioned that the citizens are willing to interchange between different bus trips as they want to improve air quality in Hong Kong. Mr. Kam Nai-wai had another opinion; he thought that reorganizing bus trips per se cannot solve the problem. In order to improve the air quality in Hong Kong the government needs to phrase out the use of per-euro buses promptly, and introduce environmental friendly vehicles. Some of the members stated that the Government did not provide enough information for the citizens to judge the effect of the policies. If there are research and data about different policies, the citizens can distinguish which policies is better for improving air quality.

After discussed for an hour, Ms. Audrey EU Yuet-mee concluded the meeting with two suggestions:

  • l Require Ms. Carolina YIP, Deputy Commissioner / Transport Services & Management, Transport Department to draft a report about the effect of switching to updated Euro buses in Hong Kong to be a reference to the citizens.
  • l Require Transport Department to draft a list of bus trips that can be reorganized or reduced. The list is useful for the District Council to discuss the issue. At the same time, the impact on the bus drivers brought by the reorganization of bus trips needs to be calculated, and being reported by the Transportation Department.

The citizens are not familiar with the effect of the policies about reducing or reorganizing bus trips. If government can do a research about that, the data collected can be a reference for the citizens. If they know that the policies are good to their health, we are sure that they will support the policies, just like what Mr. Wong Kwok-hing had mentioned in the meeting.








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