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Water quality of Victoria Harbour fully upgraded with all Harbour Area Treatment Scheme Stage 2A facilities coming into operation (with photos)

     With the facilities of the Harbour Area Treatment Scheme (HATS) Stage 2A coming into full operation today (December 19), all sewage from both sides of Victoria Harbour will be conveyed to a sewage treatment plant for disinfection and discharge into the waters west of the harbour. This new milestone for the HATS will result in the overall enhancement of the harbour's water quality.

     Officiating at the opening ceremony, the Chief Executive, Mr C Y Leung, said that the HATS is the largest environmental infrastructure project in Hong Kong's history. The construction works spanned two decades at a total cost of $25.8 billion. Adopting advanced engineering techniques to overcome physical constraints, the project involved the construction of sewage tunnels with a total length of over 44 kilometres at a depth of up to 160 metres below sea level. It also involved the upgrade of Stonecutters Island Sewage Treatment Works' annual sewage treatment capacity to 900 million cubic metres within the site of the plant, enabling it to serve more than five million people.

     Also officiating at the ceremony, the Director of Drainage Services, Mr Edwin Tong, said that the sewage treatment capacity, scale and coverage of the HATS are the highest among other such projects in Hong Kong. He expressed his gratitude for the dedication and hard work of the engineering staff and over 15,000 frontline workers that made the project a success. He was also thankful for the support from the various associated bodies and government departments.

     The HATS aims to improve the water quality of Victoria Harbour by collecting and treating sewage generated from both sides of the harbour. The project has been implemented in two stages. Facilities under Stage 1 were commissioned in December 2001, providing treatment for 75 per cent of the sewage generated from both sides of the harbour. The works of Stage 2A commenced in July 2009 and the flow turning process was completed last month. Through this process, the remaining 25 per cent of sewage from the northern and southwestern parts of Hong Kong Island, which previously received only preliminary treatment, will be redirected to the newly expanded Stonecutters Island Sewage Treatment Works for chemically enhanced primary treatment, meaning that sewage will no longer be discharged to Victoria Harbour.

     Other officiating guests at today's ceremony included the Secretary for the Environment, Mr Wong Kam-sing; Legislative Council Member Dr Lo Wai-kwok; and the Permanent Secretary for Development (Works), Mr Hon Chi-keung.

Ends/Saturday, December 19, 2015
Issued at HKT 09:30


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