Updated at 12.01pm: The government would need to spend $20 billion if it was to buy out the 12 priority sites under the latest nature conservation policy, an official said on Thursday. Principal Assistant-Secretary of the Environment, Transport and Works Bureau Jessie Wong Hok-ling told local radio that landowners did not have the rights to change land use under the Town Planning Ordinance. Ms Wong said the new policy was on a voluntary basis and offered landowners one more option for developing their properties. On Wednesday, dozens of indigenous villagers vented their anger against the environmental minister when the officials briefed Heung Yee-kuk members on the new conservation scheme. The villagers said the scheme infringed their property rights and would only benefit large developers. They demanded the government either buy out their lands for conservation or give them new ones instead. Some villagers requested the government delay implementation of the policy or launch it in phases. But Secretary of the Environment, Transport and Works Sarah Liao Sau-tung ruled out acquiring the sites with public money. Heung Yee-kuk consultant Brian Kan Ping-chee said the government?s move would usurp villagers? private lands and did not respect landowners. He said the government should purchase the sites, local radio reported. The sites include: Ramsar Site, Sha Lo Tung, Tai Ho, Fung Yuen, Luk Keng Marsh, Mui Tsz Lam, Mau Ping, Wu Kau Tang, Long Valley and Ho Sheung Heung, Deep Bay Wetland outside Ramsar Site, Cheung Sheung, Yung Shue O and Sham Chung.