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EPD responds to media report on HZMB Hong Kong Link Road reclamation works
     In response to a media report today (March 28) on the reclamation works for the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macao Bridge, Hong Kong Link Road project (HKLR) that the Environmental Protection Department (EPD) refused to respond on whether the works had violated the environmental permit (EP), an EPD spokesman replied as follow:

     The EPD has all along been acting in strict accordance with the law and with impartiality, and has not harboured any works, person, organisation or Government department.

     On the extension of reclamation works at the eastern shore of the Airport Island of the HKLR, the EPD has clearly stated in the press release issued on February 22 and the paper submitted to the Panel on Environmental Affairs of the Legislative Council on February 24 that although investigation has yet to be completed, there is no evidence that the incident has contravened the EP conditions or any environmental law. The EPD has never refused to respond to questions raised by that media organisation and the afore-mentioned situations remain unchanged.

     Concerning the environmental impacts on the seabed during the construction of the HKLR, paragraph of the HKLR Environmental Impact Assessment Report (the EIA report) has concluded that the ecological value of the reclamation area is low with no Chinese White Dolphin being spotted near the works area, and hence the 27 hectares of permanent reclamation and 10 hectares of temporary works reclamation would not require ecological compensation.

     Regarding the media report today that the EIA report stated a temporary reclamation of 50m x 2km, the EPD clarifies that this is only a rough assumption in the EIA report to estimate the 10 hectares required for the temporary reclamation works, and this 50m x 2km has no bearing on the conclusion of the EIA report. The conclusion of the EIA report remains valid as long as the actual reclamation does not exceed the 27 hectares of permanent reclamation and 10 hectares of temporary reclamation.

     For the location of the silt curtains, it is not practicable to deploy them at 5m from the reclamation boundary because vessels have to get access to the reclamation site. On October 12, 2012, the Highways Department submitted a Dolphin Watching Plan (DWP) under the EP before the commencement of works to rectify the location of the silt curtains to the boundaries of the works areas. The DWP has been made available for public inspection at the EIA Ordinance Registrar under Section 15 of the EIA Ordinance.
Ends/Tuesday, March 28, 2017
Issued at HKT 20:29
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