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Hong Kong environmental issues

This Mid-Autumn Festival in Hong Kong: celebrate family, not excess waste

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 25 September, 2018, 1:01am
UPDATED : Tuesday, 25 September, 2018, 1:01am

The Mid-Autumn Festival is a Chinese tradition based on beautiful legends (“What is Mid-Autumn Festival all about? Chinese legends, lanterns, and mooncake mountains”, September 22). It is disheartening to see that, in modern days, it has been turned into a festival of waste and excess.

To begin with, mooncake packaging is lavish and elaborate. Many mooncake boxes are neither recycled nor reused, generating an enormous amount of waste. Also, millions of mooncakes and glow sticks are wasted every year. According to a survey conducted by Green Power, Hong Kong people dumped more than 1.6 million mooncakes during the Mid-Autumn Festival in 2016. Not only is it wrong to waste food while so many are starving, it creates a huge burden for our near-exhausted landfills.

Glow sticks and lanterns are discarded overnight. After the celebration, revellers leave their rubbish behind in parks and beaches, further damaging our environment.

The havoc caused by Typhoon Mangkhut should serve as a warning on the devastating effects of extreme weather. Such storms may become a regular occurrence if we fail to appreciate the importance of protecting our environment, whether it relates to carbon emissions or waste generation.

After all, the Mid-Autumn Festival is a time for family reunions and enjoying the beauty of the full moon. So, celebrate with your loved ones, not with excess consumption.

Jenny Fok, Fanling