PUBLISHED : Thursday, 13 November, 1997, 12:00am
UPDATED : Thursday, 13 November, 1997, 12:00am

I refer to the letter from M. J. Broom, writing for the Director of Environmental Protection (South China Morning Post, November 6).

It is clear that the reasons for the deplorable state of waters in the harbour and surrounds are reflections of the effluent emanating from the government office responsible for ensuring a satisfactory quality of water and air in the SAR. How is it possible to take the Government seriously after walking past Causeway Bay Typhoon Shelter, or after noting the numerous beach closures due to dangerous pollution? How does a government that spends billions in defence of the dollar justify dumping untreated sewage anywhere, regardless how far the pipes are taken out of sight into the sea? Hong Kong is not an underdeveloped economy. When is it going to address its citizens' quality of life? Why can it not spend a few hundred million to convert polluting diesel engines of taxis or buses? Better still, given the huge profits on land sales and development these companies make, why can't the Government couple such an investment to the operating licences? We do not want interventionist government, but a leadership is needed to 'motivate' industry to change and so benefit Hong Kong's citizens.