So negative

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 28 July, 1999, 12:00am
UPDATED : Wednesday, 28 July, 1999, 12:00am

Keith Addison is right to ask the Environmental Protection Department to explain its shilly-shallying on biodiesel (letter, South China Morning Post, July 20).

All too often bright ideas are dismissed out of hand by Hong Kong's government bodies - unless and until a multi-million-dollar study is conducted.

The Government has rejected the A21 additive allowing water to be added to diesel and a massive reduction in nitrous oxide and particulates. It refuses to allow diesel-conversion kits, arguing they may not be carried out properly and thereby prove a hazard.

It refuses to give the concessions that would encourage the use of electric vehicles. Various reasons are given, mostly relating to 'lack of power', 'limited range', etc. This is despite: China Light & Power's (CLP) 10-plus-year experiment proving its electric vehicles can tackle the Jat's Incline as well as their diesel equivalents; that milk has been delivered by electric vehicles to houses at the top of steep hills in the UK for the past 50 years; and the range available now is more than enough for a range of operations.

It even stifled the KMB/CLP electric airport coach concept. The Government has always sought the impossible 100 per cent solution to any problem, ignoring the fact that every option, no matter how limited its application, will make a meaningful contribution.