The Hong Kong government is determined to achieve the emission
targets agreed with
Guangdong Province for 2010, through reduction measures and
cooperation with the province, the Hong Kong Environmental
Protection Department said Monday.
A spokesman of the department said that air quality is a serious
issue not only for Hong Kong but the whole Pearl River Delta, given
the rapid growth in urbanization and industry.
To improve air quality, the Hong Kong and Guangdong governments
have agreed to reduce emissions of sulfur dioxide (SO2), nitrogen
oxides (NOx), respirable suspended particulates (RSP) and volatile
organic compounds (VOC) by 40 percent, 20 percent, 55 percent and
55 percent respectively, the spokesman said.
The department has already made good progress in cutting NOx,
RSP and VOC emissions. For SO2, however, much of the effort has
been impaired by the rise in emissions from power plants. The
current SO2 emission is 47 percent higher than in 1997, according
to the spokesman.
Electricity generation is the biggest source of air pollution in
Hong Kong, accounting for 92 percent of SO2 and half of NOx and RSP
emissions, according to the department's figure. The department
asked the power companies to accelerate emission reduction
projects, increase the use of ultra-low sulfur coal and use natural
gas for power generation as much as possible.
For the new Scheme of Control, the government has proposed to
link the permitted rate of return on all fixed assets of the power
companies to their achievement of the emission caps, providing
economic incentive for reduced emissions, he added.
In the coming years the department will pursue additional
measures, such as introducing Euro IV emission standards to
newly-registered vehicles, the spokesman said.
(Xinhua News Agency March 21, 2006)