Author: Kelvin Tang, Antonio Da Roza
A number of different measures exist that are relevant to the quality of ambient air in Hong Kong.
The Environmental Protection Department can issue an air pollution abatement notice under s 10 of APCO against a polluting process. An air pollution abatement notice requires emissions be ceased, reduced, or other steps be taken to abate the emission of air pollutants. (1)
Similarly, the Food and Environmental Hygiene Department may issue nuisance notices against fumes or effluvia under the Public Health and Municipal Services Ordinance. (1)
These notices, however, appear to be a form of emergency power, and so may not be effective to deal with incremental, long term health impacts of air pollution. (1)
Assessment of environmental impact
The Environmental Impact Assessment Ordinance requires the assessment of environmental impact in the planning stages of many kinds of development and construction. In deciding whether or not a permit will be granted after assessment, the Director of Environmental Protection must have regard to (though not necessarily comply with) the Air Quality Objectives. (1)
An environmental permit can be suspended, varied or cancelled by the Chief Executive if the project will be more prejudicial to health than first expected. Environmental permits may also be suspended, varied or cancelled by the Environmental Protection Department if the applicant gave wrong or misleading information during the application process. However, no testing is required to ensure the assessment was accurate to begin with. (1)
The Town Planning Ordinance promotes health, safety, convenience and general welfare of the community by providing for the systematic preparation and approval of plans for the lay out of Hong Kong. The Air Quality Objectives are used as criteria in respect of sensitive air receivers in giving planning permission.
|Government Authority||Power||Ordinance/Regulation||Connection to AQOs|
|Environmental Protection Department||Issue air pollution abatement notice||Air Pollution Control Ordinance||No|
|Food and Environmental Hygiene Department||Issue nuisance notice for dust, fumes or effluvia||Public Health and Municipal Services Ordinance||No|
|Director of Environmental Protection||Grant or refuse environmental permit for designated projects||Environmental Impact Assessment Ordinance||Yes, "have regard to"|