Air Pollution in Hong Kong | South China Morning Post
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  • Jan 29, 2015
  • Updated: 7:05pm

Air Pollution in Hong Kong

Increased transparency on air quality will bring greater urgency for answers

A photo illustration showing the Air Quality Health Index (AQHI) mobile application on the streets of Causeway Bay.

It says something about Hong Kong's pollution that many people have greeted the city's new Air Quality Health Index (AQHI) and bad-air smartphone alert app launched on Monday with a shrug of the shoulders.

Saturday, 4 January, 2014, 3:38am

Air pollution must top Leung's policy address agenda

Emission mission

Hong Kong is famous for its efficient public transport systems, which carry millions of people from home to work every day. At the same time, it is equally "famous" for its polluted air, to which public transport, in the form of buses and taxis, contributes.

4 Jan 2014 - 3:42am 13 comments

Urban planners must do more to give us some breathing space

Urban planning can play an important role in reducing roadside air pollution. Photo: Bloomberg

While recent proposals by the Environment Bureau to control vehicles' exhaust fumes have received much attention, it is also worth highlighting the role urban planning can play in reducing roadside air pollution. The "street canyon effect" can be reduced by improving ventilation, cutting vehicle use, reducing pedestrian exposure and mitigating pollutants.

19 Apr 2013 - 2:48am 1 comment

In Hong Kong, political will is the key to clean air

Hong Kong skyline on the third day of what the government has described as 'dangerous' levels of air pollution. Photo: EPA

We could do without the air pollution we have suffered this week, but it does serve to remind the administration of the declaration by Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying that the quality of the air we breathe is a core livelihood issue. Roadside readings in Central on Monday were so bad that everyone was advised to steer clear of areas with heavy traffic - not just those with breathing or heart problems. The last two days have brought no relief.

18 Apr 2013 - 3:18am 4 comments

What's being said on

Hong Kong's air pollution recorded 'very high' at all three roadside stations. Photo: Bloomberg

On roadside air pollution levels soaring to dangerous heights on Monday, and the meaning of patriotism as it relates to Hong Kong's future.

17 Apr 2013 - 3:25am

Letters to the Editor, April 12, 2013

Thatcher's legacy inspires Britons, even now. Photo: EPA

I welcome the promising seven-year clean-air plan released by the government, especially the proposal for low-emission zones for franchised buses. However, the range should be expanded to private cars too.

12 Apr 2013 - 3:12am 1 comment

What's being said on

People cover their noses on a street in Mong Kok. Photo: Nora Tam

On top officials' seven-year plan to cut Hong Kong's appalling roadside pollution, and mainland tourists giving HK the thumbs down.

10 Apr 2013 - 3:20am

Fresh thinking needed to win air pollution battle

Fresh thinking needed to win air pollution battle

When Environment Secretary Wong Kam-sing unveiled the government's plan to improve Hong Kong's air recently, he was joined by representatives from three other bureaus - transport and housing; development; and food and health. The attendance of these other officials was unprecedented and signalled the government's intention to respond to calls for the departments to work together to tackle air pollution.

10 Apr 2013 - 3:20am 4 comments

Talking points

Government reveals clean-air plan

The government steps up its efforts to tackle the city's air pollution quandary as Secretary for the Environment Wong Kam-sing unveils "A Clean Air Plan for Hong Kong".

28 Mar 2013 - 3:30am

Hong Kong's pollution hits dangerous levels again

A pedestrian covers her face in Central amid severe air pollution levels. Photo: May Tse

Roadside pollution in Hong Kong hit hazardous levels on Friday, as readings at roadside monitoring stations in Central, Causeway Bay and Mong Kok hit levels of 183, 193 and 137, respectively.

9 Mar 2013 - 1:36am 8 comments

Government's plan for greener vehicles

Government subsidies can turn vehicles into greener machines. Photo: Felix Wong

I refer to the letters relating to roadside air pollution by Nigel Lam ("HK$10b fund will not curb air pollution", February 4) and Don Pittis ("Taxis could switch to new hybrid models", February 4).

In his policy address, the chief executive said our air quality policies were premised on the protection of public health, and our next priority would be improving roadside air quality.

15 Feb 2013 - 4:12am 1 comment

Hong Kong air pollution causes 3,000 deaths, costs billions annually

Air pollution levels in Causeway Bay soar on Sunday. Photo: Edward Wong

Air pollution caused more than 3,000 premature deaths and monetary loss of HK$39 billion last year to Hong Kong, according to a study by University of Hong Kong researchers.

16 Jan 2013 - 7:49am

After such a long wait, policy address is bound to disappoint

C.Y. Leung could include cutting air quality in his first policy address.

Poor old C.Y. I'm sure the chief executive had only the best intentions when he decided to postpone his first policy address from October to January. But by now, he has surely learned the folly of delay. Over those extra three months, the expectations of decisive policy action have risen to absurd heights.

15 Jan 2013 - 4:16am 2 comments

Letters to the Editor, January 14, 2013

Recycled water can be used for plants. Photo: K.Y. Cheng

Beauty of New Territories being ruined

I couldn't agree more with Guy Shirra's points ("Scrap unfair small-house policy now", January 9).

I am so disillusioned with this policy and with Hong Kong in general.

14 Jan 2013 - 3:31am 9 comments

Pressure on CY Leung to deliver on clean air

Illustration: Adolfo Arranz

A big carrot is likely to be accompanied by a heavy stick when Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying announces plans to phase out old and polluting commercial diesel vehicles as he attempts to address roadside air quality in his maiden policy address next week.

7 Jan 2013 - 7:55am 2 comments