Notes on Lamma visit by HAD, Lands Dept & EPD Oct 2012

Joint visit to Lamma by Home Affairs Department, Lands Department and Environmental Protection Department

17th October 2012

Aims:

To demonstrate to relevant government departments the need to improve Lamma’s environment by redesigning waste facilities so that they meet the requirements of the community, allowing people to dispose of their waste responsibly and recycle more.

To ask participants from the relevant government departments on today’s visit to work with the community to provide ongoing services for the separation and recycling of unwanted items. In the near term, we would like to see permanent services for the recycling of glass, plastic, food waste and WEEE, the items that are currently collected by the Community Recycling Booths under a pilot scheme, which is due to finish in March 2013.

Participants:

Lands Dept: Mr. LAM Chun-fai and Ms CHAN Wai-man FEHD: Mr. WW Wong and his colleagues

HAD: Mr Joe HUI

EPD: Mr. Stephen Siu, Mr. Steven Wong and Alan Yu LL: Jo Wilson, Chairperson, Nick Bilcliffe, Consultant

Current Situation:
Lamma’s bin areas are dumping grounds. They are ugly and dirty and not designed to encourage people to act responsibly. People are more likely to put their waste next to the bin, rather than inside, dump it off the side of the path or just leave their litter behind.

Lamma has a huge problem with dumping and littering.

Nevertheless, the pilot recycling scheme has been a success. It has taken some plastic, food waste and small WEEE, and a significant amount of glass out of the bin areas. The removal of glass and food waste, in particular, has made an improvement to the four RCP/bin areas used by the restaurant on Main Street. These areas are still far from perfect, but if government does not have a mechanism to sensibly research and map out a community-wide solution, we would welcome any incremental steps that can work towards that end.

Programme:

  1. Visit to the illegal platform opposite the post office. This location has been earmarked for recycling bins for WEEE and glass. Living Lamma will explain the history of this area and the problems with this location choice (see pictures 1-3)
  2. Visit to the RCPs and bin areas used by businesses and residents along Lamma Main Street. These are:
    1. Near the toilet block/sitting out area (picture 4)
    2. In the Yung Shue Long valley (pictures 5 & 6)
    3. Near the Waterfront Restaurant (pictures 7 & 8)
    4. Near the temple (pictures 9)

Living Lamma will explain where the restaurant waste (focus on glass and food waste) at these sites comes from and point out the challenges of these locations.

Today’s visit will not take in all the other bin areas on Lamma, that are daily dumping grounds for waste and unwanted, but still useful, material (see, for example picture 10-12 and Living Lamma’s “Stop the Mess” report.)

  1. Conversations with business owners. Living Lamma would like to encourage participants to the visit to talk to restaurant and bar owners and staff to gain more understanding of what they need to be responsible with their waste. On their return back through the village, participants will follow the route of Living Lamma’s glass collection, so they can speak to as many people who have been involved in the pilot scheme as possible.

Living Lamma’s Philosophy:

Living Lamma campaigns for environmental improvement. For improvement to occur, we need to change the way things are done. If we want to change the way people dispose of their waste, we must find solutions that are appropriate to our community and make it easy for people to act responsibly.

Living Lamma supports the planning intention for Lamma Island. We seek solutions to community problems that uphold the planning intention for the island, which states:

“The general planning intention is to conserve the natural landscape, the rural character and car-free environment of Lamma Island; to retain Luk Chau in its natural state; and to enhance the role of Lamma Island as a leisure destination. The ecologically and environmentally sensitive areas including the Sham Wan SSSI, the South Lamma Island SSSI, mountain uplands, woodland and the undisturbed natural coastlines should be protected.

Future growth of the settlement is limited to the existing villages and development nodes. The existing low-rise, low-density character of the traditional villages and other residential areas should be retained. Supporting Government, institution and community and open space facilities have been allowed for. Opportunities have also been provided for the enhancement of the waterfront of Yung Shue Wan and integrating recreational and visitor attractions. It is also the planning intention to preserve the cultural heritage of Lamma Island, which is one of the most ancient settlements in the territory. The heritage sites could also serve as visitor attractions to enhance the role of the island for conservation and as a leisure destination.”

(Statutory Outline Zoning Plan for Lamma Island)

Guide to the Pictures in this Report

  1. EPD’s view of the area opposite the post office
  2. Living Lamma’s view of the same area, showing congestion and current usage.
  3. A perspective of the illegal platform and derelict shoreline. Living Lamma would like to see alternative plans developed for the renovation and enhancement for public use of this area (including the removal of the illegal platform, renovation of the shoreline incorporating space for public use, widening of the footpath, beautification of the wall and the provision of sufficient notice board space).
  4. Daily view of the RCP by the toilets
  5. Daily view of the RCP at Yung Shue Long valley
  6. View of RCP at Yung Shue Long valley when cleaning is being conducted
  7. View of the bin area near the Waterfront
  8. View of the bin area near the Waterfront, with fish market behind
  9. View of the bin area near the Temple
  10. Typical view of general waste bins before collection
  11. Typical view of recycling bins before collection
  12. A general waste bin in a public recreation area