Four successful prosecutions by EPD against illegal disposal of construction and renovation waste found in blitz operations

     Four people, comprising a scaffolding sub-contractor, a building cleaning worker and two members of the public, who illegally disposed of construction and renovation waste including bamboo sticks, plastic, soil debris and wood planks, were fined a total of $25,000 by the Kwun Tong Magistrates' Courts today (April 6) for contravening the Waste Disposal Ordinance (WDO).

     A spokesman for the Environmental Protection Department (EPD) said that during a number of blitz actions conducted in September 2016, a scaffolding sub-contractor was caught disposing of more than 50 bamboo sticks in a car park at Sha Kok Mei Road in Sai Kung, a building cleaning worker was found dumping four bags of plastic and soil debris outside Wing Wah Industrial Building in Kwun Tong, and two members of the public were caught disposing of several waste planks at Pik Sha Road in Sai Kung and three bags of construction and demolition materials at Cheung Ning Street in To Kwa Wan respectively. The EPD subsequently prosecuted the four people in accordance with the WDO.

     To combat illegal waste disposal, EPD staff conducted over 8 500 inspections and blitz actions in 2016 and convicted 96 cases with fines ranging from $500 to $25,000.

     The spokesman said, "In order to step up efforts in combating illegal activities under the WDO, the EPD completed the trial scheme of a surveillance camera system last year. Based on the experience and results of the trial scheme, the EPD will, subject to existing resources, install surveillance camera systems in phases at fly-tipping black spots. Since mid-2016, the department has already installed surveillance camera systems at three black spots and is planning to install surveillance cameras progressively at more black spots in the coming months with a view to enhancing the monitoring and deterrence against illegal waste disposal. In addition, the EPD will work with other government departments to monitor the illegal dumping of waste and will arrange joint operations at fly-tipping black spots when necessary."

     The spokesman reminded people handling waste that they should dispose of waste properly in accordance with the law, or they will be prosecuted. Reusable materials or waste with recycling value should be collected by recyclers, while non-recyclable waste should be delivered to appropriate waste management facilities, such as designated waste transfer stations, public fill reception facilities or landfills, for proper treatment or disposal.

     Under the WDO, it is an offence for anyone to dispose of waste at public places. First-time offenders are liable to a maximum fine of $200,000 and six months' imprisonment. A maximum fine of $500,000 and six months' imprisonment may be imposed on second or subsequent convictions.

Ends/Thursday, April 6, 2017
Issued at HKT 15:45