Hong Kong air pollution

Hong Kong’s idling engine ban is full of contradictions

PUBLISHED : Saturday, 05 May, 2018, 11:03am
UPDATED : Saturday, 05 May, 2018, 11:03am

Your correspondent Jan Bochenski (“Summer is here and so are the idling engines”, April 29) and the Environmental Protection Department officer, who responded to his report of violation of the idling engine ban, appear to address the air pollution aspect, whereas the background note to the idling ban legislation addressed also the heat and noise nuisance aspects. 

This prompted me to look up the literature on the subject: the contradictions therein are such that one cannot help sympathise with the law enforcers, which include traffic wardens.

The background note says: “As electric vehicles and hybrid vehicles operating solely in electric mode do not emit pollutants, the idling prohibition should not apply on them.” 

Surely this is incorrect, because the electric motor in driving the air conditioner also generates heat. Therefore the idling ban should also apply to electric cars and hybrid cars

Moreover, the ban does not apply when a hot weather warning is in force, nor within a three-minute period, nor if a certain number of vehicles are queuing.

Peter Lok, Heng Fa Chuen