Locals setting bad example

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 22 October, 1997, 12:00am
UPDATED : Wednesday, 22 October, 1997, 12:00am

I was very impressed by your editorial of October 6, on how to attract tourists through a green programme to get them to visit the country parks of Hong Kong.

Being a local resident, I like to have a walk in our country parks with my children during our holidays.

I frequently walk through the reservoir areas of country parks, but I was angered by what I witnessed on Sunday, October 12, when I visited Aberdeen Lower Reservoir.

A number of people were already on the top of the dam.

Many of them had brought with them slices of bread and threw bits of bread into the water hoping to feed the fish in the reservoir. Clearly, the fish were not interested in this food.

As a result, the surface of the water was covered with pieces of bread. Surely with so much bread being left to rot in the water, this would be a cause of pollution.

I also saw other kinds of rubbish floating on the water of this reservoir. This too will cause pollution and it is an eyesore for passers-by. Seeing all this rubbish, made me feel very sad and ashamed.

It is pretty much the same in other reservoirs. I once saw a gweilo washing his large dog in the water of the Plover Cove Reservoir. The man and the dog seemed to be enjoying this activity very much but I was very angry. I decided against challenging the man in case his dog attacked me.

The Agriculture and Fisheries Department (AFD) manages the reservoirs, but so far I have not seen any AFD officers stopping such acts, and I never read about any offenders being prosecuted through the courts. Many years ago, the committing of such offences was rare. However, in the last 10 years, Hong Kong people have become less environmentally conscious.

Parents are setting a bad example by encouraging their children to commit such offences. I once argued with a mother who allowed her son to throw bread into the reservoir. She insisted that she was correct in feeding the fish. But how about those people who throw Coca-Cola cans in to the reservoir? The AFD must be aware of the deteriorating situation and should take action to curb this.

We should not allow tourists to visit country parks until we are sure they are clean. Barbecue areas are particular refuse blackspots, during and after public holidays.

C. K. WONG Sai Wan Ho