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June 7th, 2012:

Public input welcome, as long as it favours Airport Authority’s plans

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Court grants review of incinerator plan

RTHK Radio 3 News

The High Court has granted leave for a judicial review launched by four Cheung Chau residents over the government’s plan to build a waste incinerator on Shek Kwu Chau. Lawyers representing the group said the environmental impact assessment report on the multi-billion dollar project was defective.

But counsel for the government said the report had already explained that a pressing need existed for the construction of the incinerator, and there was no alternative other than building it on Shek Kwu Chau.

Climate change policy is a disaster

by Howard A Latin

04:45 AM Jun 07, 2012

Conventional greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions-reduction programmes will prove “too little, too late” by deferring crucial cutbacks too far into the future.

Global warming and climate change are caused by the retention of excess heat-trapping gases in the atmosphere. Increasing the amount of GHGs in the air will worsen the greenhouse effect by trapping more heat.

One might consequently suppose that the most fundamental climate policies would focus on stabilising and then reducing the atmospheric GHG concentration. This is what a sensible climate policy could do and should do.

Yet, nearly all climate change mitigation plans around the world focus on reducing current or projected GHG discharges by selected percentage rates applied over a few decades – while ignoring the crucial cumulative impacts of persistent GHG discharges on the atmospheric GHG concentration.


These two kinds of pollution control targets may seem to be equivalent, and many people treat them as such. But they are not the same.

A major cause of climate-policy confusion and mistakes is the presence of these two different baselines against which changes in climate conditions can be measured.

In an emissions-reduction approach, the claimed “reductions” come from comparisons with the amount of GHGs that would be discharged by pollution sources in a business-as-usual scenario – that is, if no regulatory controls were imposed.

The alternative baseline compares the atmospheric GHG concentration in a given year against the atmospheric concentration in a past year or projected future year. This comparison addresses a mitigation programme’s annual impact on the atmospheric GHG concentration in comparison to rising, declining or stable atmospheric concentrations in other years.

The Kyoto Protocol, for example, provides that participating developed nations should cut their GHG emissions to roughly 5 per cent below 1990 discharge levels on average, and only the United States among affluent countries has not agreed to meet this minimal emissions-reduction target.

However, even if the nations meet their self-assumed commitments by this year, the treaty member states will be allowed to continue discharging all but approximately 5 to 10 per cent on average of the GHG pollution they were putting out in 1990.

Because virtually all policymakers have been using the business-as-usual baseline rather than the atmospheric concentration baseline, they may consider the small, if not trivial, emissions reductions achieved a worthwhile achievement.


In this light, the Kyoto Protocol clearly should be regarded as a disastrous climate-policy failure that has allowed the rapid growth of persistent GHG discharges which consistently increase the cumulative atmospheric GHG concentration, and hence, its related climate change dangers.

It is an awful mistake because it creates the illusion of emissions-reduction progress, while in reality, it allows a steady increase in the greenhouse effect.

In explaining the dynamic “stocks and flows” properties of the GHG concentration in the atmosphere, Professor John Sterman of MIT observes: “Our mental models suggest that if we stop the growth of emissions, we will stop global warming, and if we cut emissions, we’ll quickly return to a cooler climate.”

But this is a fallacy. He argues: “Rather, it’s more like filling a bathtub. The amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere is like the level of water in a bathtub – it grows as long as you pour more water in through the faucet than drains out. Right now, we pour about twice as much CO2 into the atmospheric tub than is removed by natural processes.”

Prof Sterman warns: “Because the drains out of the various bathtubs involved in the climate – atmospheric concentrations, the heat balance of the surface and oceans, ice sheet accumulations, and thermal expansion of the oceans – are small and slow, the emissions we generate in the next few decades will lead to changes that, on any time scale we can contemplate, are irreversible.”

The only arguable benefit of “reducing the increases” in GHG mitigation programmes is that climate change might eventually become even worse if we do absolutely nothing to restrict GHG pollution. But a lesser “bad” does not make a “good” climate policy.


Is there a solution to the current stalemate? A “clean” alternative technology approach that replaces major GHG sources with green technologies is the only realistic way to eliminate the large quantities of persistent GHG discharges.

This focus on creating and disseminating clean GHG-free technologies and processes (sometimes called “decarbonisation”) is also the only viable way that developed nations can meet the economic needs and prosperity goals of developing countries without continuing to degrade global climate conditions.

We need to promote technological research and development activities, clean technology dissemination, international technology transfers and greater fiscal support for innovative GHG-free green technologies – many of which already exist but may not yet be in mature forms that can support widespread diffusion at affordable costs.

These include at least half a dozen types of solar energy processes, wind turbines, wave and tidal power generators, geothermal energy, increased hydropower generation, nuclear energy, hydrogen fuel cells, plasma gasification (which converts garbage and industrial wastes into “clean” biofuels), methane combustion from waste disposal sites, and diverse biofuels made from nearly every biological material.

Twenty years of futile negotiations have proved that we cannot separate emissions-reduction targets from sustainable development goals. We need to accomplish both effective climate change mitigation and increased economic and social development, or else both are certain to fail.

Howard A Latin is Professor of Law and Justice Francis Scholar at the Rutgers University School of Law at Newark. This article is based on a chapter from his latest book, Climate Change Policy Failures: Why Conventional Mitigation Approaches Cannot Succeed.

Al Fayed says incinerator hazardous to public health

Published on Thursday 7 June 2012 03:43

Tycoon Mohamed Al Fayed yesterday branded a multi-million-pound incinerator planned next to his Highland estate a danger to public health.

As a public inquiry into the proposal for the £43 million waste plant in Invergordon started, the former Harrods owner claimed the development would be playing “Russian roulette” with the health of the community.

A Scottish government- appointed official is holding the hearing in Invergordon.

The project’s developer, Combined Power and Heat (Highlands) Ltd, and opponents of the plans will give evidence.

The government gave the proposals planning permission in 2010, but landowner Mr Al Fayed’s Ross Estates appealed against the approval, prompting the public inquiry.

The opponents recently received an assurance from the reporter that health and air quality will be included in the inquiry.

Mr Al Fayed, who owns Balnagown Estate, said: “The inquiry is good news for anyone who cares about the health of the people who live inInvergordon and its extensive surrounding area.

“I never had any doubt that the issue of air pollution and its effect on public health had to be considered by a Public Local Inquiry in order that the reporter would be able to hear all the relevant evidence.

“The potential damage from this waste-burning incinerator in the heart of a residential area cannot be exaggerated.

“I have already commissioned a study by a leading authority in such matters, a professor at the University of Surrey, and it is clear beyond doubt from his report that it would be playing Russian roulette with public health were permission granted for this monstrous rubbish-burner on the banks of the Cromarty Firth.

“It is vital that local people resist an unwelcome scheme, designed only to make somebody rich.”

Incinerator firm ‘fixed result of site selection’

Cheryl Livingstone
Aberdeen Press and Journal
June 7, 2012
A DEVELOPMENT company was accused yesterday of “fixing the result” of a site-selection exercise as it planned to build a £43million waste-to-energy incinerator.

The claim was made as a public inquiry opened into Combined Power and Heat (Highlands) Ltd’s (CPH) proposals to build in the Highlands.

The company denied the allegation – but admitted that it had not looked at some possible alternative sites because they were deemed inappropriate.

About 30 residents attended the inquiry at Invergordon, with local councillors and multimillionaire and former Harrods boss Mohamed Al Fayed, who has been helping the community fight the plans for two years.

The inquiry was called after CPH appealed against Highland Council’s decision to reject its bid for planning permission in 2010.

The inquiry heard Mr Al Fayed’s company, Ross Estates, and the local authority raised concerns that other sites had not been examined, including Nigg and the former landfill at the Longman Industrial Estate in Inverness.

Ian Crummack, a technical adviser for CPH, said other sites had been considered but were not thought to be appropriate.

He said there were engineering problems with the Longman site and it was not big enough for the development.

He also raised concerns that the development would be visible from the Kessock Bridge entrance to the Highland capital.

During cross-examination, however, advocate James Findlay, representing Highland Council, asked whether a full assessment of the site had been carried out.

Mr Crummack said the team looking at potential locations did not fully assess the Longman site and its decision was based on knowledge of what problems were usually associated with former landfills.

Mr Findlay queried why other sites on the Longman Industrial Estate had been marked as unavailable in a report from 2008, and said another company, Shore Energy, had since been granted planning permission to build a recycling centre on land belonging to Inverness Harbour Trust on the estate.

He asked: “Was the harbour trust land included in the assessment of the Longman Industrial Estate for possible sites?”

Mr Crummack said that, from his recollection, it had not been included.

Mr Findlay said: “Was the Inverness Harbour Trust ever approached about using their land?” Mr Crummack said he was not aware of that having happened.

Douglas Armstrong QC, representing Ross Estates, also raised concerns about alternative sites and accused the company of fixing the site-selection process.

He said the environmental statement had listed five sites that had been considered, while only one had been available for development – the Invergordon site on Cromarty Firth Industrial Estate.

Mr Armstrong said: “That is not site-selecting – this is fixing the result before it’s even begun. It’s like entering a horse race knowing your horse is going to win.

“You have said the Longman site didn’t qualify but presented no evidence why it wasn’t suitable. That is not acceptable in any process.”

Mr Crummack said he did not agree with that. He added: “I think it is unfair to criticise us simply for recording the process we went through at the time. We would be criticised if we hadn’t included any other sites in the report.”

The inquiry continues.

Copyright 2012 Aberdeen Journals LtdAll Rights Reserved

Aberdeen Press and Journal

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Counting the costs

SCMP – Jun 07, 2012

As the plan for a third runway gets ready for take-off, how do we ensure that the impact on Hong Kong’s living environment is fully accounted for? Kevin Poole argues against undertaking a study of the social return on investment, saying too many questions remain about its validity. Agnes Tsang believes such a study is critical if we are ever to know the true price of the project to our health and the natural world, on top of the well-publicised benefits.

On May 28, the Airport Authority submitted to the government the project profile for the environmental impact assessment of Hong Kong International Airport’s planned three-runway system. The authority is firmly committed to fulfilling all its statutory environmental requirements and, where possible, going the extra mile to assess other potential impact.

An important part of this involves considering the valuable feedback of our stakeholders, who have played a key role in the development of the airport’s master plan towards 2030.

Recently, some green non-governmental organisations in Hong Kong and legislators have voiced their belief that, in addition to the statutory environmental impact assessment, the authority needs to undertake a strategic environmental assessment, a social-return-on-investment study and a carbon audit.

As always, it is essential that we are clear about what these studies entail, as well as what meaningful value they may bring to the planning of a three-runway system.

The Airport Authority has conducted preliminary research on case studies worldwide of social return on investment, which we are keen to review in greater depth before mapping a way forward.

In fact, we have researched more than 30 published economic assessment studies on the aviation industry or airports across North America, Europe and Australia since 1998, and out of these, five covered social and/or environmental impacts. Four were done in Britain, including two for Heathrow airport’s proposed runway expansion.

Our research findings show that there is a lack of commonly accepted standards and approaches for conducting studies of social return on investment.

Furthermore, because analysis of these studies requires placing monetary value on impact that cannot be quantified in the marketplace, measuring these effects is heavily dependent on stakeholder feedback and individual judgment.

For instance, one of the studies assessing the social return on investment of Heathrow airport’s new runway expansion assigned a monetary value to quantify ”uncertainty and blight”. The assessment monetised the loss of pride in the residential communities near Heathrow whose residents felt that they were physically trapped and psychologically disempowered due to the uncertainty arising from the Heathrow expansion plan.

To date, no consistent standard for how best to assign a monetary value to impact indicators has been developed, and this limits the credibility of analysis of social return on investment and its ability to make meaningful comparisons across different projects.

Many of the issues of using such studies for project evaluation stem from the fact that it is relatively new. One of the few guidelines presently available, ”A Guide to Social Return on Investment”, was published by Britain’s Cabinet Office just three years ago.

As of today, most of the studies available on social return on investment have come from policy commentary put out by principally British-based charities and think tanks. Academic research done on the use of such studies is limited.

This is why it is critical to gain a better understanding of the social-return-on- investment approach. We need to ask questions on key issues such as:

  • How applicable is Britain’s experience of these studies to the Hong Kong context
  • In the absence of a standard of measurement, what values should be considered
  • How can stakeholders’ values and feelings towards different issues be monetised

A social-return-on-investment study has not been used for any development projects in Hong Kong. Given its lack of a meaningful track record in the local context and limited applications to the aviation industry worldwide, we cannot readily adopt such a framework in good faith at this time.

However, we understand that some of our stakeholders believe there should be a measurement of social impact, and we will continue to look at different social impact assessment approaches and evaluate their pros and cons.

Meanwhile, the Airport Authority has been conducting carbon audits on facilities on the airport island since 2008, and we would explore the most appropriate approach to assessing carbon aircraft emissions that can be influenced but not owned or controlled by the authority.

As for a strategic environmental assessment, this is mainly a land-use planning or development policy tool commonly used for town planning. The law, as it is, already requires the Airport Authority to take into account the accumulative environmental impacts of committed projects in the vicinity.

It should be noted that Hong Kong has a comprehensive process for environmental impact assessment.

However, like our stakeholders, we are concerned about the social impacts and carbon emissions related to a project of such scale and nature.

Rest assured that the authority is actively exploring these issues because it is committed to managing the planned expansion of Hong Kong International Airport responsibly and contributing to the growth of Hong Kong in a sustainable manner.

Kevin Poole is deputy director, projects, at the Airport Authority

Environmentalists are not against development. We believe that a healthy natural environment is a pre-condition for sustainable development. The various green groups in Hong Kong may have different concerns about the construction of a third airport runway, but we agree on one thing: the need to conduct an assessment of social and environmental costs, also known as a social-return-on-investment analysis, for this mega project.

We need it because a third runway will have a huge environmental impact in Hong Kong. More importantly, chief executive-elect Leung Chun-ying committed himself to it during his election campaign.

The public is becoming more aware of the limitations of the environmental impact assessment required by law. This type of study measures only the environmental impact at the project level. It was never a tool designed for environmental protection.

In Hong Kong, our main problem is a lack of comprehensive environmental planning. This leads to constant conflicts and cumulative impact. Without holistic planning to put development projects in the context of a natural environment with limited capacity, many push rules to the maximum and feel no responsibility to protect the larger environment.

Sadly, a holistic approach to planning is far from becoming a reality in Hong Kong. In the meantime, we must kick-start the process to measure the true environmental and social costs of the runway project.

Today, people talk more about sustainable development. We have begun to realise that we are reaching the limits of both what we can bear, in terms of living conditions, and what the environment can sustain. So when the impact of an infrastructure project is judged to be beyond compensation or the scope of mitigation in the statutory study, something must be done.

On the third runway, Hong Kong must look into other measures to avoid or address its impact before a decision is made.

The costs of an infrastructure project are much more than just the construction costs: a value should be put on quality of life, including clean air and people’s health. If we run the numbers again, taking into account all these factors, the benefits of a project may be different from the original projections.

When the average citizen is asked whether “Hong Kong should have a bigger and nicer airport”, the answer is a very predictable “yes”; people always want something better. The questions that need to be asked are: “Who will pay for it?”, “Who will make money out of it?” and “Who will suffer if the costs outweigh the benefits in the end?”

It is not wise to say, “Let’s spend a fortune to build it first and then find out, 10 or 20 years later, what the damage will be”. The third runway will be Hong Kong’s most expensive infrastructure project and will involve reclamation the size of Victoria Harbour. Yet, outside the mandated impact study, no attempt has been made to scientifically evaluate the project’s far-reaching environmental impact and social costs. Such evaluation follows the principles of sustainable development and is adopted in best practices overseas.

Most environmental groups are not demanding a stop to the project; they are asking for a thought process that calculates the true costs and benefits of the runway.

Hong Kong should understand the costs of, say, losses to fisheries, noise pollution and health impact. Take carbon tax. The Airport Authority has not taken into account the impact of such a tax on demand for air travel in its projections. Yet, Australia has already imposed a carbon tax on the aviation industry, while the European Union requires Hong Kong airlines to comply with its emission trading scheme. Mainland China, too, is considering a carbon tax.

The need to address social costs has been widely recognised by the community, including Leung, who said at a forum in March that infrastructure project development should consider not only economic benefits but also benefits to the community. He said a process parallel to the environmental impact assessment should take place to consider social costs.

The Legislative Council’s environmental affairs panel passed a motion on April 23 calling for a social-return-on-investment study, a strategic environmental assessment and a carbon audit of the project before construction begins.

The public, too, supports further study. A poll commissioned by Greenpeace and WWF in January found that over 70per cent of the people surveyed agreed that social and environmental costs need to be considered. This compares with the Airport Authority poll that found 73per cent of people supported building a third runway.

The authority says there is confusion over which methodology to use to conduct a social-return-on-investment study. It makes no sense to hide behind this self- created confusion. The green groups have done enough work – holding forums, writing papers, conducting surveys – to show the authority how the process could be conducted. However, these efforts have been ignored for almost a year now.

Would it be a joke to say Hong Kong can build the best airport for 2030 but is ignorant about calculating its costs? We hope the Airport Authority will begin to take its social responsibility seriously and start to respond to the community’s expectations.

Agnes Tsang is manager of conservation strategy at WWF – Hong Kong

Ash from incinerator is hazardous

SCMP letter – June 7, 2012

I refer to the letter by Wolfgang Ehmann (“Residual waste cannot be eliminated”, May 23). Since 2007, through these columns, your correspondent has promoted the use of incineration.

In a submission to a Legco panel in March, Mr Ehmann, on behalf of the German Chamber of Commerce, said: “In 2007 our office led a delegation of senior [Environmental Protection Department] staff and stakeholders to Germany to attend the Waste to Energy Trade Fair and visit waste to energy plants in Hamburg and Frankfurt.” So he is doing his job to promote German incineration technology and point out the lack of local legislation to mandate recycling.

Germany, thanks to at-source recycling legislation, has a 70per cent recycling rate, so it now imports waste from around the world to keep its incinerators operational.

What he and the outgoing environment minister sidestep is that incineration thermally converts waste and leaves 23 per cent bottom ash and 6 per cent fly ash by weight, which are hazardous waste, with no landfills left here to take the ash. That means building mega islands to receive the ash.

Last month, a company called Solena Fuels was in town. It uses plasma gasification of waste to produce biofuel for jets and boats, bio-naphtha and biodiesel. Its partners are 15 world airlines and Maersk. There are no ash or emissions from a plasma plant, just a molten slag that can be used as road aggregate.

Incineration and its airborne/soil pollutants have long been associated with dioxins.

The only incinerator of the size proposed here is in Detroit, Michigan, in the US. According to one report, it has cost the city an estimated US$1.2 billion, and has caused increased pollution levels. It says that “asthma death rates in Detroit are two times that for the state”.

Meanwhile the Environmental Protection Department did not mention in a recent environmental impact assessment that three incinerators are planned in Shenzhen from 2015 (burning 6,300 tonnes of waste a day), with predominant northerly winds blowing into Hong Kong.

James Middleton, chairman, Clear the Air

China Harbour and Bouygues Construction win £1bn Hong Kong bridge contract

6 June, 2012

China Harbour and Bouygues subsidiaries VSL and Dragages Hong Kong have been awarded a £1bn contract to design and build long Hong Kong section of the Hong Kong – Zhuhai – Macao bridge.

The 12.9 billion Hong Kong dollar (£1bn) contract value makes it amount makes it the largest design and build contract ever awarded in Hong Kong.

The joint venture will construct a section of the bridge measuring 9.4km, from the International Airport Island to the boundary of Hong Kong territorial waters. This bridge will support a dual three-lane carriageway over Hong Kong’s deep western waters. The section in Chinese waters which includes a bowstring bridge, a three tower bridge and a two tower bridge is being let by Chinese authorities.

Description: Hong Kong - Zhuhai - Macao Crossing

Hong Kong – Zhuhai – Macao Crossing

The joint venture will also have to carry out the electrical and mechanical engineering works, along with the installation of marine navigational aids, a ship impact protection system, and the maintenance and monitoring management systems for the structure of the bridge.

The project poses a number of major challenges. The bulk of the works are to be completed using marine-based equipment, requiring special logistical arrangements. At the same time, navigational channels must be maintained open throughout construction. Also, because of its proximity to the airport, very strict height restrictions will also need to be observed.

Construction will begin this summer and will take nearly four and a half years (54 months), with handover planned in 2016.

The Hong Kong – Zhuhai – Macao bridge is one of ten major infrastructure projects launched by the Hong Kong Government since 2007. It forms part of the Chinese programme intended to strengthen links between cities in the region, and will link Hong Kong with Zhuhai and Macao, two cities located on the other side of the Pearl River Delta.

UN Environment Program report says environment is at breaking point

THE earth is being pushed to its biophysical limits and critical thresholds have already been exceeded, according to a grim new report from the UN.

In a 525-page report on the health of the planet, the  the United Nations Environment Program paints a grim picture.

It says: “Several critical global, regional and local thresholds are close or have been exceeded.

“… abrupt and possibly irreversible changes to the life-support functions of the planet are likely to occur.”

The report, which was released overnight, says changes include rising sea levels, increased frequency and severity of floods and droughts, and the collapse of fisheries.

The report, which compiles three years of work by 300 scientists, says about 20 per cent of vertebrate species are under threat of extinction, coral reefs have declined by 38 per cent since 1980, greenhouse gas emissions could double over the next 50 years, and 90 per cent of water and fish samples are contaminated by pesticides.
It says little or no progress has been made over the past five years on nearly a third of the main environmental goals, including global warming. Significant progress has been made on just four of the 90 most important goals, the report says.

“This is an indictment,” UNEP executive director Achim Steiner said at a news conference in Rio De Janeiro. “We live in an age of irresponsibility that is also testified and documented in this report.

“In 1992 (when the first of the agency’s five reports was released) we talked about the future that was likely to occur.

“This report 20 years later speaks to the fact that a number of the things that we talked about in the future tense in 1992 have arrived,” Steiner said.

“Once the tipping point occurs, you don’t wake up the next morning and say, ‘This is terrible, can we change it?’ We are condemning people to not having the choice.”

Steiner said: “Change is possible. Given what we know, we can move in another direction.”

The report was released in the run-up to the UN Rio+20 conference on June 20 and 21.

Read more:

CY Leung vows to close communication gap with public

Clear the Air says: Finally it seems we have a new Chief Executive of the Populus majority instead of the tycoon minority.

CY comes from a working family background, not silver spoon-fed oafs who deem themselves another class of human being beyond the Law of the land.

As for the current Bow Tie incumbent – ‘In carcere requiescat’ is our wish for his malfeasance in public office.

This meet-the-people / kiss-the-babies  is how a modern leader should lead, with policies for the people’s health, wealth, housing, education  and interest ahead of the concrete pouring, tycoon

developer pleasing, position abusing incumbent.

CY has already spent more time meeting the plebs of Hong Kong than Bow Tie and his sad overpaid underworked ilk (who deem themselves special) did in 7 years.

Clear the Air welcomes CY Leung and we trust his policies will improve our environment, human and animal health that Bow Tie has damaged through his abuse of power and ineffective policies that

placed the wishes of the minority ahead of the needs of the majority.

“That this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom—and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.”

Abraham Lincoln

CY Leung vows to close communication gap with public
Chief executive-elect says the best way to lead HK is by listening to its people
Colleen Lee
Jun 07, 2012

Recounting his meeting with a middle-aged man in Mong Kok on Sunday while shopping for goldfish, chief executive-elect Leung Chun-ying realised that people still found their leader unapproachable.

“What stunned me is that many people in society still feel that there is a psychological gap between us. By reaching out to the community, I hope to bridge the gap – the psychological, policy and geographical gap,” said the former surveyor. “When embarking on the conversation [with the man], he appeared hesitant as to whether he should talk to me. [To me, his hesitance] was unnecessary,” Leung said.

“He was [probably] wondering: ‘As I have bumped into the [chief executive-elect] on the street, should I grab the chance and say a few words to him?'”

The man walked with a cane, and, after heeding his concerns about the employment of the disabled as well as the government’s policy and allowances for this group, Leung found his arguments impressive.

“What he said was rational and he appeared peaceful. Throughout the course of the talk, you could see that he was highly educated. [But] when he was talking, I felt he held the belief he should not have spoken in front of the chief executive-elect.”

Facing growing public worries about his reputed high-handed style of leadership, Leung has vowed to narrow the communication gap between himself and the people.

He said his determination to gauge the public’s mood could help with policymaking.

“To do this job well, it should be considered political work. It requires political ability. This is not just PR work or what spin doctors can do. It is necessary for policymakers to reach out to the community,” he said.

“I hope that by doing so, it can help improve the quality of our policies and help win public acceptance, support and understanding for our policy initiatives.”

During visits to the New Territories West, he said some residents had suggested his administration set aside more plots for hotel use in the area to boost their job opportunities and save commuting time and costs.

“This is community wisdom. What they spoke about is a bridgehead economy in economic terminology,” Leung said.

Meanwhile, the leader-in-waiting said he planned to move into Government House in Central from his home on The Peak after he takes office on July 1.

Leung said his existing home was big enough for his family of five. But after taking security factors into account, his family had decided 10 days ago to move into the 156-year-old compound.

The nature-lover said he had not started thinking about how to use the space. Asked if he might plant vegetables at Government House, he said: “I will if possible.”

The father of three said being elected as chief executive had affected his family life but they had showed understanding and did not complain.

he said. “At times when I was out streets dining with my wife, photographers would come over to shoot what we were eating.”

Chief executive-elect Leung Chun-ying is mobbed during a visit to Sham Shui Po after his election victory in March.

Description: Chief executive-elect Leung Chun-ying is mobbed during a visit to Sham Shui Po after his election victory in March.

“that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom—and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.”

Abraham Lincoln