Clear The Air News Blog Rotating Header Image

It’s only ‘simple air pollution’

SCMP Laisee 10 June 2012

It’s only ‘simple air pollution’

We see that the government has failed in efforts to block a judicial review of the Shek Wu Chau incinerator. This will go ahead in November. But we have to say we were unimpressed by the remarks of the government’s counsel Johnny Mok Shu-luen SC at the court hearing. Pointing out that the government was not required to carry out a hazard assessment with respect to the proposed incinerator, he remarked, “We are talking about simple air pollution…It’s not going to be life-threatening. It’s only going to have a very limited impact.”

We know he is only doing his job, but it is disturbing to hear such offhand comments about air quality. Is he reflecting the thinking at the Environmental Protection Department? We think our learned friend should look at the Hedley Environmental Index, which can be found at There he will see that the number of avoidable deaths due to air pollution last month alone amounted to 200. The economic loss in terms of air pollution-related burden of disease and loss of productivity amounted to HK$42.5 billion last year and is HK$15.3 billion so far this year.

So much for “simple air pollution”, Mr Mok.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *