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June 1st, 2009:

Observatory Says Weather Conditions Likely to Improve

Simpson Cheung, SCMP – Jun 01, 2009

The city’s recent poor air quality was expected to improve soon, the Hong Kong Observatory said on Monday.

A spokesman for the observatory said the air quality was likely to get better because windy weather was helping to disperse pollutants.

The Roadside Air Pollution Index showed air pollution was very high in some major urban areas on Monday morning.

Causeway Bay recorded the highest level – at 135, while Mongkok was 110 and Central reached 114, the index showed.

The Environmental Protection Department said on Monday that Hong Kong’s calm weather conditions had affected the air quality.

And the Hedley Environmental Index – which measures the social and health impact that pollution – said on Monday levels were high enough to cause four premature deaths – and were the second highest levels recorded this year.

There has been considerable concern in Hong Kong in recent years about the impact pollution is having on people’s health and quality of life.

The Hedley Environmental Index website noted that “air pollution causes about 7 million additional doctor visits across the population in Hong Kong each year”.

The Environmental Protection Department said Hong Kong was facing two main air pollution problems. “One is local street-level pollution. The other is the regional smog problem,” it says.

The street level pollution is mainly caused by diesel vehicles in the city. However, smog is also generated by pollutants from factories, power plants and motor vehicles both in Hong Kong and southern China.


James Middleton, Clear the Air says: hey EPD wake up, what about the coal burning power plants and the ships burning high sulphur oil ??