The LegCo Reporter
Issue No. 7 (8 December 2005)

At its meeting on 7 December 2005, the Legislative Council passed the following motion with no legislative effect:

    Motion on "Endeavouring to improve air quality", moved by Hon James TIEN Pei-chun as amended by Hon CHOY So-yuk and further amended by Hon Jeffrey LAM Kin-fung

    "That, further to the passage of my motion on 'Vigorously reducing air pollution', as amended by other Members, by this Council last year, I put forward a proposal on 'Collaborating in tackling cross-border air pollution' jointly with 92 members of the National Committee of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference at its meeting in March this year; the proposal received positive response from the State Environmental Protection Administration of China which has indicated that it will continue to take the lead and coordinate the work in this regard in order to enhance cooperation between Hong Kong and Guangdong on the environmental protection front; in this connection, this Council urges the Government to adopt the following complementary measures more positively with a view to curbing the trend of continuing deterioration of air quality in Hong Kong and the Pearl River Delta ('PRD') region:

    On the cooperation between Hong Kong and Guangdong:
    (a)endeavouring to achieve as early as possible the emission reduction targets for 2010 regarding the four types of pollutants;
    (b)expediting the formal commissioning of the PRD regional air quality monitoring network and other effective measures, and enhancing the transparency in the dissemination of the monitoring information, so as to expeditiously unify the emission standards and regulatory regimes between Hong Kong and Guangdong;
    (c)expeditiously implementing the emissions trading pilot scheme;
    (d)stepping up negotiations with the Mainland authorities to provide business operators who have installed air pollution control systems in their plants in the PRD region with tax relief on depreciation of the relevant systems;
    (e)maintaining close cooperation with the State Environmental Protection Administration of China and the Guangdong Environmental Protection Bureau to promote the prevention and control of regional air pollution;

    On the local front:
    (f)introducing legislation to require motorists to switch off the engines of their vehicles while waiting, and according priority to regulating emissions from idling engines of private cars and government vehicles as well as idling engines of vehicles in school and hospital premises;
    (g)on condition that there is no additional burden of electricity charges on the public or the industrial and commercial sectors, urging the two power companies to expedite various emission reduction projects and use more environmentally friendly fuels;
    (h)prolonging the incentive scheme for liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) light buses and promoting the switch of light goods vehicles to LPG;
    (i)expediting the provision of additional sites for setting up LPG filling stations;
    (j)actively engaging in research and development regarding the utilization of renewable energy, formulating a policy on renewable energy, setting utilization targets for renewable energy, requesting the two power companies to follow such policy and targets, stipulating in the Scheme of Control Agreements with the power companies the proportion of renewable energy to be used in electricity generation, and providing economic incentives to encourage the power companies to use more renewable energy; at the same time, formulating measures to promote the incorporation of renewable energy equipment into the power supply network;
    (k)vigorously introducing environmentally friendly vehicles which run on a combination of petrol and electricity, hydrogen or natural gas, etc, including heavy and medium goods vehicles as well as buses; offering tax concessions and introducing environmentally friendly fuels, and formulating related incentive measures;
    (l)actively studying the feasibility of increasing the fines for smoky vehicles;
    (m)formulating a comprehensive and effective policy on energy conservation, with the Government taking the lead in implementing energy conservation measures in various departments and setting higher energy conservation targets, with a view to promoting community-wide involvement in energy conservation;
    (n)expeditiously implementing the regulatory scheme for products containing volatile organic compounds on which the Government and the trades have reached a consensus;
    (o)stepping up the testing of emissions from vehicles to ensure their compliance with Hong Kong's emission standards; and
    (p)expediting the implementation of the 'Indoor Air Quality Management Programme' and joining hands with the industrial and commercial sectors in actively promoting the programme, thereby preventing poor indoor air quality from harming the public's health,

    so that the emission reduction targets originally set for 2010 can be achieved as early as possible."