The Government today (June 29) announced the Clean Air Plan for Hong Kong 2035, setting out the vision of “Healthy Living ‧ Low-carbon Transformation ‧ World Class”, and the challenges, goals and strategies to enhance the air quality of Hong Kong to 2035.
In March 2013, the Government issued the Clean Air Plan for Hong Kong, introducing various policies and measures to tackle the challenges faced by Hong Kong in improving its air quality. The Government published a progress report later in June 2017 and updated the major goals in the Clean Air Plan.
After the release of the first Clean Air Plan, the Government has implemented a series of measures to reduce emissions from local electricity generation, vehicles, vessels and more, and collaborated with Mainland authorities in reducing emissions of air pollutants in the region. These efforts have borne fruit. The ambient and roadside concentrations of major air pollutants have dropped substantially and visibility has been vastly improved. All these have brought noticeable health benefits to society and the community in Hong Kong. By 2020, Hong Kong had attained the major goals set out in the progress report in 2017.
Announcing the new Plan, the Secretary for the Environment, Mr Wong Kam-sing, said, “The Clean Air Plan for Hong Kong 2035 we are releasing today will carry on the past successes to the future, leading Hong Kong to be a more liveable city with air quality on par with major international cities by 2035, and advancing towards the target of meeting in full the ultimate standards of the World Health Organization Air Quality Guidelines in the long run.”
The Clean Air Plan for Hong Kong 2035 covers the following six major areas:
- To promote the use of new energy transportation, continue planning for railway networks and adopt environmentally friendly transport modes in new development areas
- To create a liveable environment through city management and planning policies, and embark on a study on the relationship between air quality and health
Comprehensive emissions reduction
- To continue implementing measures in emissions reduction from vehicles and vessels, and step up control over the content limits of volatile organic compounds
- To carry on reducing emissions from electricity generation and explore at the same time the use of new low-carbon energy such as hydrogen energy and liquefied natural gas
- To adopt innovative technology to monitor air quality and release more detailed air quality information to the public
- To formulate joint regional air pollutant emission reduction targets and strengthen air pollution research and monitoring in the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area
“In view of the challenges brought by climate change, it has become a global trend to explore the use of the latest green technologies to reduce carbon emissions. We will continue to implement measures to further improve Hong Kong’s air quality, coupled with the review of Hong Kong’s Air Quality Objectives every five years to progressively tighten the targets,” Mr Wong continued.
Mr Wong expressed sincere gratitude to different stakeholders for sharing their views on the directions and measures for the Clean Air Plan for Hong Kong 2035. He also thanked different policy bureaux and departments for their support and collaboration. Looking ahead, the Government will continue to work closely with different sectors in society and enhance regional collaboration, with a view to improving air quality on a sustained basis and making Hong Kong a more liveable and low carbon world-class city.
The Clean Air Plan for Hong Kong 2035 and its leaflet are available on the Environmental Protection Department’s website (www.epd.gov.hk/epd/english/resources_pub/policy_documents/index.html).