Estate managers rewarded for green efforts

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 25 March, 2004, 12:00am
UPDATED : Thursday, 25 March, 2004, 12:00am

Property managers yesterday collected cash vouchers and certificates as reward for their efforts to make public housing estates greener places to live.

Over 130 estate management staff collected their prizes at the Housing Authority's second Green Property Management Awards.

The initiative is to encourage better management and co-operation between estate staff, tenants and the government in promoting and implementing green initiatives.

The winner of the Housing Department Category was Butterfly Estate in Tuen Mun, so named because of the abundance of butterflies in the area 20 years ago.

The winning estate features sculpted shrubs, recycling corners, bamboo gardens and conservation information stations.

There is also an education corner where residents can learn about different butterfly species.

Other efforts include use of organic fertilisers to grow plants and putting sand-filled water bottles in toilet tanks to reduce the amount of water used for flushing, said housing manager Chin Tak-kout.

The budget for the estate's green initiatives was $350,000 last year, down from about $800,000 a few years ago, he said.

The estate's 15,000 residents have been responsive to their many efforts, Mr Chin said.

At least 100 people take part in the annual tree-planting exercise, Mr Chin added.

Friends of the Earth assistant director Edwin Lau Che-feng said he was impressed with the winner's efforts.

'There's been real reduction in the amount of waste produced, as well as the consumption of water and electricity,' he said.

Some of Butterfly Estate's initiatives were particularly creative, he said.

People in Hong Kong in general are becoming more aware of the environment and conservation, Mr Lau added.