The need to reduce and recycle waste is crucial to Hong Kong, with our large population and rapidly filling disposal facilities. Here you can find out why recycling is important, what the Government is doing to encourage it, how you can recycle waste and where to obtain more information.
Why Reduce and Recycle Waste?
Because Hong Kong has to deal with an unsustainable amount of waste in such a small geographical area, everyone needs to be aware of what we can do to improve the situation. Our landfills will be full, one by one, in the mid to late 2010s. So we all need to take responsibility and act now.
- Waste reduction guidelines and factsheetshttp://www.wastereduction.gov.hk/en/quickaccess/resource_centre_index.htm
Waste Reduction Programmes
Whilst the Government takes the lead, it is essential to involve the whole community in reducing waste. The “Hong Kong Blueprint for Sustainable Use of Resources 2013 – 2022” unveiled in May 2013 promulgates comprehensive action plans to reduce waste through enhanced social mobilization, coupled with appropriate policies and legislation.
Through the action plans and joint effort of the entire community, the Blueprint targets to reduce Hong Kong's per capita municipal solid waste disposal rate from 1.27 kg per day to 1 kg or below by 2017, and further down to 0.8 kg or below by 2022."
- More on Hong Kong Blueprint for Sustainable Use of Resources 2013 – 2022http://www.enb.gov.hk/en/files/WastePlan-E.pdf
The Hong Kong Awards for Environmental Excellence
The Wastewi$e Label under the Hong Kong Awards for Environmental Excellence recognises the role that local companies and organisations can play in managing and reducing waste. Jointly organised by 11 organisations, including the Environmental Campaign Committee and the Environmental Protection Department, and the Hong Kong Productivity Council being the Scheme's consultant, the Scheme provides applicants with free advice on waste management techniques, and rewards them for their efforts with public recognition. Applicants are expected to:
- Avoid and minimise waste.
- Collect and recycle suitable materials.
- Buy or manufacture recycled products.
- The Hong Kong Awards for Environmental Excellencehttp://www.hkaee.org.hk/
Recycling Rechargeable Batteries, fluorescent lamps/tubes and Electronic Equipment
Rechargeable batteries contain some hazardous and other substances that can be recycled. They are used in many types of electronic equipment, such as:
- MP3 players
- Video cameras
- Mobile phones
- Laptop computers
- Portable electronic game sets
To encourage battery recycling, collection points are located in stores and railway stations throughout Hong Kong.
Waste electrical and electronic equipment (WEEE) can also be recycled, for example:
- Television sets
- Washing machines
- Video or audio equipment
- Microwave ovens
- Water heater
- Rice cooker
Electrical and electronic equipment, either in good operating condition or out of order, is welcome. The collected appliances will be inspected and repaired as necessary, and will finally go to charity. Besides, compact fluorescent lamps and tubes generated from households can also be recycled.
- More on recycling of rechargeable batterieshttp://www.wastereduction.gov.hk/en/workplace/rechargebattery_intro.htm
- More on recycling of electrical applianceshttps://www.wastereduction.gov.hk/en/workplace/weee_intro.htm
- More on recycling of computershttps://www.wastereduction.gov.hk/en/workplace/crp_intro.htm
- More on recycling of fluorescent lamps and tubeshttps://www.wastereduction.gov.hk/en/household/flrp_intro.htm
Source Separating Domestic Waste for Recycling
The Programme on Source Separation of Domestic Waste, launched in January 2005, aims to make it more convenient for residents to separate waste at source. This is done by encouraging and assisting property management companies to provide waste separation facilities on each building floor, and broadening the types of recyclables to be recovered.
Besides paper, aluminum cans and plastic bottles, the types of recyclables recovered have been broadened to include other metals and plastics, such as:
- Other metal cans such as biscuit tins and clean food cans.
- Mixed metal items such as pots and vacuum flasks.
- Plastic bagging such as shopping bags and packaging.
- Mixed plastics such as CDs and toys.
Each participating housing estate or building can run periodic large scale collection programmes for specific types of reusable and recyclable materials such as clothing, electronic and electrical appliances, and computers for resale to recyclers.
- More on source separation of domestic wastehttps://www.wastereduction.gov.hk/en/household/source_intro.htm
Apart from separating waste in domestic buildings, people can also bring their recyclable materials to various locations in the community. The Community Recycling Network has been set up to arouse public awareness about recycling, and to encourage public participation in waste recovery by providing collection points for low-valued recyclables, including waste plastics, glass bottles and small waste electrical and electronic equipment. Materials collected will be further processed and recycled locally. People can bring their recyclable materials to these community recycling locations.
- More on community recycling networkhttp://www.wastereduction.gov.hk/en/community/index.htm
- Locations of community recycling collection pointshttp://www.wastereduction.gov.hk/en/community/crn_outlet.htm#ecf_recyc_ctr
Another way of separating waste is to donate unwanted but still usable items to a recycling organisation. These organisations include:
- Bo Charity Foundation Limited*
- Caritas (Hong Kong)
- Chai Sin Club
- Christian Action
- Christian Concern for the Homeless Association
- Chu Kong Plan
- Crossroads Foundation Limited
- CTU Education Foundation Limited*
- Feeding Hong Kong Limited*
- Foodlink Foundation Limited*
- Friends of the Earth (Hong Kong)
- Hong Chi Association
- Hong Kong Women Development Association Limited*
- HKCTU Workers' Support Recycling Centre
- Industrial Relations Institute
- James Lung International Arts and Cultural Exchange Association
- Oxfam Hong Kong
- Po Leung Kuk
- Remar Association (Hong Kong) Limited
- Salvation Army
- St James' Settlement
- Straw Action
- Tai Po Environmental Association
- The Hong Kong Down Syndrome Association
- The Methodist Church, Hong Kong
- Tuen Mun District Woman's Association Limited*
- Tuen Mun Youths Association
- Yan Oi Tong
*Organisations which accept donation of food only
- Location of collection pointshttps://www.wastereduction.gov.hk/apps/vicinity_result.jsp?collection_type=outlet&material_type=all&district_id=0&lang=en/
- Caritas(HK) online computer donation (Available in Chinese only)http://www.ccw.org.hk/donation.php
To help you obtain information on waste reduction and recycling, the Environmental Protection Department operates a Recycling Helpline that provides:
- Technical advice on waste reduction and recycling.
- A list of waste collectors and recyclers.
- Local waste recycling statistics.
- Information on Government initiatives and activities.
You can call the Environmental Protection Department's Customer Service Centrehttp://www.epd.gov.hk/epd/english/how_help/report_pollution/csc_more.html at 2838 3111 or request information by email from firstname.lastname@example.org:email@example.com.
- More on the helpline and other sources of informationhttp://www.wastereduction.gov.hk/en/quickaccess/useful_contact.htm
Last revision date: January 2014