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Better air quality —- but at a cost: A tough choice to make!

Joint Chamber Luncheon

Better air quality —- but at a cost: A tough choice to make!

Richard Lancaster
Managing Director, CLP Power Hong Kong Ltd.
The Hong Kong public is calling for better air quality and globally Governments are tackling climate change by reducing coal fired generation. In Hong Kong, the Government has made using more natural gas its strategy for achieving its new Air Quality Objectives (AQO) and reducing carbon emissions. CLP Power recently responded with a plan to double the amount of gas it uses over the next few years to meet the electricity demand and achieve its statutory requirements.

Although it has long been known that natural gas is more expensive than coal, CLP’s plan, which will inevitably lead to significantly higher electricity bills, has triggered concerns from the local community, in particular in the face of uncertain outlooks for both local and global economies

Unfortunately, the debate is not a simple matter of choosing “to pay or not to pay”. Burning coal will result in long-term environmental and social costs. On the other hand, deploying more natural gas has immediate economic  consequences. To move ahead, government, businesses, members of the public and power companies must have a constructive debate about the issue:

– What are the long term implications for using more gas and less coal?
– Are there alternatives to achieving better air quality at a lower cost?
– What can the power companies or the Government do to help secure a reliable supply of natural
gas at the lowest possible price?
– As consumers and businesses, is there anything we can do to address the situation?

Richard Lancaster, Managing Director of CLP, will give a straight talk on CLP’s plan and its implications for businesses and consumers, which will provide members of the public with a platform to discuss these unavoidably tough choices.

Tuesday 10 July 2012
12:30 – 2:00 pm
Oasis Room, 8/F, Renaissance Harbour View Hotel
1 Harbour Road, Wanchai
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