Some scuba divers out at Peng Chau (East) have reported to me that a pier or jetty is being constructed. I have no objection to this as such, but what I do object to is that the work is causing sediment to be washed out into the sea to areas where there are hard corals, which are easily killed in this way.
Peng Chau is known to the diving community as having some of the best hard corals in the territory. It will take many years, if ever, before the corals that are killed grow again.
Can the Environmental Protection Department tell me whether an environmental impact assessment (EIA) was carried out, and whether the environmental impact of this work was considered? Can the Agriculture and Fisheries Department tell me whether it is aware of this threat to the corals, and what, being the authority responsible for conservation, does it propose to do? Lastly, I understand that the Architectural Services Department is responsible for the work. What is it doing to remedy the damage it, or its contactors, have caused? Even small projects may cause significant environmental damage.
Dr B. W. DARVELL Chairman The Hong Kong Marine Conservation Society