Household-based waste levy is preferred option: poll

PUBLISHED : Monday, 30 September, 2013, 12:00am
UPDATED : Monday, 30 September, 2013, 4:53am

Hongkongers would rather buy from the authorities garbage bags that will limit the amount of waste they dispose of than pay property management firms a set amount in waste-disposal charges, a survey shows.

The poll came as the Council for Sustainable Development put forth three waste-levy models for public consultation last week.

The first model charged residential buildings by volume of waste, the second by weight of waste, and the third charged individual households by requiring them to buy garbage bags of a specified volume.

Of the 961 people polled by the Democratic Alliance for the Betterment and Progress of Hong Kong last month, half opposed the building-based levy. More than 40 per cent supported the idea of having households buy their own prepaid garbage bags.

The household-based waste levy, which is used in Taipei and Seoul, requires people to buy prepaid garbage bags that would be disposed of at collection points.

But council chairman Bernard Chan said at the City Forum yesterday that it would be difficult for Hong Kong to fully adopt the same scheme, as most of the city's residential buildings were high-rise flats.

"I don't think Hong Kong people will be willing to walk to a collection point several blocks away from their apartment building," he said.

The World Green Organisation suggested that the government authorise property management firms to sell the prepaid garbage bags and then collect the waste from individual households for disposal.

"This way, the scheme will be fair and practical," said its chief executive, William Yu.