How plastic waste reduction effort by food vendors on Cheung Chau Island can be extended
I am writing in response to the article “Cheung Chau Island food vendors join campaign providing 4,000 reusable containers to fight Hong Kong’s growing rubbish problem” (August 11).
I am glad that there are some warm-hearted food vendors who would like to work on Hong Kong’s plastic problem. Recently, I have noticed that more Hongkongers are aware of the problem of plastic waste due to Taiwan’s restriction on plastic drinking straws and efforts by NGOs to raise awareness. However, most Hongkongers have not taken action. If shopkeepers take the initiative to provide reusable food containers, this might encourage other citizens to also try to recycle plastic waste. They could bring along their own food containers when buying food in the future.
However, I think the government should not neglect its responsibility on plastic waste. The report mentioned that 21 per cent of municipal solid waste dumped in our landfills is plastic waste. Plastic waste does not easily decompose naturally due to its complex structure.
Hence, the government should make an effort to cope with the problem of plastic waste. To begin with, the government can provide subsidies for shopkeepers who launch schemes like the one in Cheung Chau. Also, the government should provide more subsidies and facilities to the recycling industry to recycle plastic material.
Apart from the government, citizens should also reduce the amount of plastic rubbish produced by, for example, not using disposable tableware and lunchboxes. These small steps can help Hong Kong make the great leap towards overcoming its environmental problem.
Tsui Kit-lam, Kwai Chung