Applications invited for community involvement projects on waste charging

The following is issued on behalf of the Environment and Conservation Fund:

     The Environment and Conservation Fund (ECF) Committee has set up a new funding scheme to help eligible organisations carry out Community Involvement Projects for Waste Reduction Through Quantity-based Municipal Solid Waste Charging that help the community to prepare for the implementation of municipal solid waste (MSW) charging.

     An ECF spokesperson said, "The ECF Committee supports the Government to follow the recommendations of the Council for Sustainable Development (SDC) and implement MSW charging as soon as possible, which is one of the major waste reduction initiatives under Hong Kong: Blueprint for Sustainable Use of Resources. To further promote waste reduction and recycling, and give the community an early start in experiencing waste charging, the ECF has earmarked $50 million for the community involvement projects, which will be open for applications from October 9 until November 16."

     Non-profit making organisations or bodies may submit applications to the ECF to fund target buildings/premises for community involvement projects which would allow waste producers and relevant stakeholders to rehearse the charging process and reflect the impact on waste reduction so that necessary preparatory work can be undertaken to prepare for full implementation of charging as soon as practicable.

     The spokesman said that the ECF Committee was aware of the challenges of developing a system for full implementation of MSW charging in all sectors in one go, as it would have a direct impact on over 2.2 million domestic households and a wide range of different commercial and industrial (C&I) establishments, as well as public institutions and community services units. Waste producers should be adequately informed of the new initiative and be prepared for charging through the creation of financial incentives to drive behavioural changes.

     The spokesman added that the ECF Committee supports the provision of funding for the community involvement projects so as to enhance public awareness and understanding of related issues, including how to avoid the generation of waste, the polluter-pays principle and how to support clean recycling.

     Further information about the community involvement projects on waste charging is available at the ECF website: The ECF Secretariat and the Environmental Protection Department will jointly organise a briefing session for interested organisations or bodies. Details are as follows:

Date: October 15 (Thursday)
Time: 2.30pm to 4.30pm (registration starts at 2pm)
Venue: Room 101 (Auditorium)
       The Boys' and Girls' Clubs Association of Hong Kong
Address: 3 Lockhart Road, Wan Chai, Hong Kong

     The briefing session will be conducted in Cantonese. Reservations can be made via email at or by telephone at 3528 0465 or 3528 0474 for Mr Ho and Ms Ho.

     The SDC recommends the Government to implement quantity-based MSW charges in both the domestic sector and the C&I sector in one go. To facilitate waste charging, waste collected at Food and Environmental Hygiene Department (FEHD) refuse collection points or through direct collection services would need to be packed in pre-paid designated garbage bags for disposal, while a "gate fee" based on weight would be charged for waste disposed of at landfills or refuse transfer stations. Residential buildings that are served by the FEHD could adopt a charging mechanism based on the total volume of waste disposed of by the building for a transitional period of up to three years, during which they could gradually move towards collection "by household using pre-paid designated garbage bags" as the ultimate goal.

     The ECF was established under the Environment and Conservation Fund Ordinance (Cap 450) in 1994 to support educational, research, and other projects and activities in relation to environmental and conservation matters. The objectives of the ECF are to promote individual behavioural and lifestyle changes to protect the environment and achieve sustainable development by supporting eligible non-profit making organisations in arranging related projects and activities. Since its establishment in 1994, the ECF has provided funding support for over 4,800 projects, totalling $2.26 billion.

Ends/Wednesday, October 7, 2015
Issued at HKT 15:16