Air-con temperatures are far too cold

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 16 April, 2002, 12:00am
UPDATED : Tuesday, 16 April, 2002, 12:00am

During the hottest March on record the air-conditioners in Hong Kong were set at Arctic temperatures.

The ride home on the KCR one day last week was an endurance test, a bit like being locked in the back of a refrigerated meat truck. No wonder pashmina shawl sales are up. Anyone going to a film, or a restaurant, or 20 floors in a lift, needs the comfort.

With the slowdown of the economy, the deficit, and the gurus searching for ways to cut costs, why doesn't someone just issue an edict to turn the air-conditioners of Hong Kong up about five degrees (to make them warmer) so that the chill is not so deadly, the impact of stepping from the air-conditioned environment into the non-air-conditioned not so traumatic, and the energy bills in Hong Kong not so staggering?

With all the wisdom of eight months residence, I still shake my head in amazement at the veneration of the air-conditioner. A bit less cold comfort might be a warm surprise for the economy.