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Transcript of remarks by SEN and S for S on cleaning-up of Polypropylene plastic pellets (with photos/video)

     Following is the transcript of remarks by the Secretary for the Environment, Mr Wong Kam-sing, and the Secretary for Security, Mr Lai Tung-kwok, at a media session after inspecting the clean-up of Polypropylene plastic pellets at Shek Pai Wan on Lamma Island today (August 9):

Reporter: How long do you expect to clear up the beaches? ...(inaudible)

Secretary for the Environment: We are closely monitoring the progress of the collection of those plastic pellets. It is difficult to guess how long or how much time we have to spend in order to clear all of them. Our strategy is to work with green groups and the public for information sharing and then we will give how much we are collecting on a daily basis, so that we need to estimate the progress.

Reporter: How long will this operation continue?

Secretary for the Environment: We would like to clear most of them as fast as possible, so we will see the situation. As mentioned earlier, it may take months for us to collect all of them as they are scattered around the coastal areas of Hong Kong. It is difficult to clear at this stage.

Reporter: For the liability issue, what kind of progress has been made?

Secretary for the Environment: Our Department of Justice is following on this issue with Marine Department, they are following up and will have meeting on a daily basis. We will report the progress to the public as soon as possible.

Reporter: In terms of compensation, is there any new progress on that either?

Secretary for the Environment: Not yet but I think we are following up on that.

Reporter: How is the cleaning going so far?

Secretary for Security: Well, as you can see, as far as this location is concerned, I think that it is progressing quite smoothly. But there is still a lot of work to do, in particular at those remote areas. I understand that with the assistance of green groups, more volunteers will come out on this coming Saturday and Sunday at more polluted areas to clean them up. As far as government agencies are concerned, in addition to working hand in hand with those volunteers, either from the green groups or those who come individually, we will focus on remote areas where there is no public transport and it is quite difficult to reach there on foot. So in that circumstances, the Marine Police will assist colleagues from other departments responsible for the job by transporting them to the location to conduct the clean-up and then they will pack up all they got and ship it back to the base for onward transmission to the temporary storage location.

Ends/Thursday, August 9, 2012
Issued at HKT 22:42


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