The need to explore ways to further develop renewable energy in Hong Kong has long been recognised. Now, with the government proposing a target of between 1 per cent and 2 per cent of our energy coming from renewable sources by 2010, interest is growing. As we report today, a British company is hoping to develop our first wind farm on islands off Sai Kung. This is a welcome development - especially considering the pressing need to combat air pollution. It remains to be seen whether the project is feasible and how effective it would be. The government's green energy target is modest, to say the least; many European countries reached this figure long ago. Wind, solar and biomass already comprise up to 20 per cent of the electricity needs of Germany, Denmark, Sweden and the Netherlands, among others. Given our circumstances and with so much talk internationally about how greenhouse gas emissions are causing temperatures to rise and climate change, the casual observer might expect Hong Kong to be at the forefront of introducing energy alternatives. Some effort is being made - but not enough. A Hongkong Electric wind turbine on Lamma is due to start supplying residents this week. And CLP Power has invested in wind farms on the mainland and elsewhere. But more can be done. Hong Kong does have obstacles to overcome. The blanket of pollution makes harnessing power from the sun an unreliable endeavour, while, as smog levels of late show, the wind does not always blow either. As yet, neither of these can be relied on and until a means of storing their output can be found, backup energy sources will have to be used. Hong Kong is also so small in area that limits are placed on the extent to which wind farms can meet our energy needs. Whatever the challenges, they do not seem to have deterred the private British company, Wind Prospect. The firm would like to build a wind farm on the Ninepin islands, east of Sai Kung, and if feasibility studies back up its instincts, plans to distribute power to Tseung Kwan O through CLP Power's grid. The firm is no new-comer to green energy - it is already involved in four projects in Britain. Hong Kong is seen as a commercial prospect despite being in a typhoon belt. This is the type of initiative which has - so far - been lacking here. The Environmental Protection Department and independent studies have long shown us our air quality is bad for our health. But the ensuing debate has resulted in little of substance. More effort is needed in tackling pollution both here in Hong Kong and across the border in Guangdong. Wind Prospect is to be applauded for its proposal, as should any like-minded company. Proposals which aim to give Hong Kong a much-needed boost to its renewable energy sources should be encouraged.