The Secretary for the Environment, Transport and Works, Dr Sarah Liao, together with the chairmen and vice-chairmen of District Councils (DCs) today (November 2) visited Stonecutters Island Sewage Treatment Works (SCISTW) to see the operation of the plant and the achievements brought about by the Harbour Area Treatment Scheme (HATS) Stage 1.
Dr Liao also took the opportunity to solicit views of the DCs on the way forward for Stage 2 of this significant sewage treatment programme.
Members of the DCs were told that as the key component of HATS, the SCISTW was one of the most efficient chemical treatment plants in the world, with a design capacity for treating 1.7 million cubic metres of sewage per day and an organic pollutant removal rate exceeding 70%.
The plant is now treating 1.4 million cubic metres of sewage and effectively stopping 600 tonnes of sludge from entering the harbour every day. It features space-saving, double-tray sedimentation tanks and employs the latest technology and equipment available.
The visiting party noted that HATS Stage 1 was now treating 75% of the sewage generated from both sides of the Victoria Harbour. Sewage from the entire Kowloon, Kwai Chung, Tsing Yi, Tseung Kwan O and part of Hong Kong Island including Chai Wan and Shau Kei Wan now receives chemical treatment before disposal.
To further improve the water quality and the environment of the harbour area, the Government has developed a preferred option for HATS Stage 2 - a two-phase, around $20 billion programme that will provide additional facilities to convey all sewage from the harbour area to SCISTW for chemical treatment and disinfection, and subsequent biological treatment.
A consultation document on HATS Stage 2 was released in June to gauge the views of the public on the proposed way forward for HATS. The consultation will end on November 20.
During the tour, the visiting party was given first-hand information about the computer control system of the plant, and the operation of the flocculation and sedimentation tanks, the sludge dewatering house and the chemical dosing facilities.
Joining the group on the visit includes the Permanent Secretary for Home Affairs, Ms Shelley Lee, the Permanent Secretary for the Environment, Transport and Works (Environment), Mr Keith Kwok, the Acting Director for Drainage Services, Mr George Lai, and the representatives from the Home Affairs Department, Drainage Services Department and Environmental Protection Department.
Ends/Tuesday, November 2, 2004