[Hong Kong] Response to Policy Address 2017 回應施政報告2017

Response to Policy Address 2017 回應施政報告2017

Proposed conservation measures finally appears in the Policy Address
-- yet it maybe an exchange for the development of the Country Park

(18 January, 2017) The Hong Kong Bird Watching Society is pleased that conservation measures proposed by environmental NGOs for years or even decades are finally incorporated in today’s policy address, including the non-in-situ land exchange for the conservation of Sha Lo Tung and the establishment of a nature conservation trust. However, we are worried that these measures are actually a compromise of the development of the Country Park.

HKBWS, together with other environmental NGOs, has been actively proposing conservation measures to protect areas of high ecological value in Hong Kong. We are delighted that the Government finally decided to use non-in-situ land exchange to protect Sha Lo Tung and to resolve the decades-long conflict.

Moreover, for the past 12 years or so, environmental NGOs has been actively proposing the establishment of a nature conservation trust, similar to the National Trust in the UK. We strongly support the establishment of a committee to study the resources and legislation required for the fund.

We consider these two measures are important to conserve private lands of high ecological value while respecting the development right of the landowner.

We welcome the Government’s pilot active conservation projects in the key areas of high ecological value on Lantau (e.g. Tai O, Shui Hau and Pui O). The designation of the Robin’s Nest Country Park, which is an important terrestrial ecological corridor between Shenzhen and Hong Kong, is also supported.

On one hand, the Government promised to protect more land with high ecological value and increase the area of Country Park; but on the other hand, the development of public housing and elderly homes at the periphery of country parks with relatively low ecological value will be explored. The Government’s track records of rezoning Green Belts of “relatively low ecological value” for development do not give us a cause of confidence or support in such a land use policy.

Furthermore, the whole context is framed to create an unnecessary dilemma between protection of country parks and housing development. We worry that this would mislead the public that country park is an important and key land resource for the development of public housing and social facilities.

環團多年爭取的保育措施終被採納 但憂慮成為發展郊野公園的交換條件
--- 香港觀鳥會回應施政報告2017

(2017年1月18日) 環保團體多年來提出的保育措施中,包括非原址換地方式及成立自然保育基金,終被政府納入今年的施政報告當中。香港觀鳥會表示歡迎,但同時憂慮保育措施會否成為發展郊野公園的交換條件。

本會聯同 其他環保團體一直積極向政府提出各種保育具高生態價值地方的措施。現今沙螺洞的發展及保育爭議一直僵持了近二、三十年,政府最終決定以非原址換地方式保護當地生態。

至於環團過去十多年間提出類近英國「國家信託」(National Trust) 的自然保育基金,政府將會成立委員會研究基金的運作和所需的法例及資源 。




香港觀鳥會 HKBWS