Secretary for the Environment KS Wong attended a seminar on construction waste management today held by the Green Building Council.
He was joined by 100 members of the construction and recycling industries to discuss how to strengthen the management of construction waste.
Mr Wong said the Government attaches importance to the handling of construction waste, adding it has implemented the Construction Waste Disposal Charging Scheme since 2006 which has been effective in reducing construction waste.
He also added that In the review of the construction waste charging, the polluter-pays principle would be expressed. As the charge was set in 2006 and has not been reviewed for some time, so it is now appropriate to review it in order to cover the expenses incurred in the landfills.
“In terms of timing, we are going to be engaging the stakeholders in the coming few months with the target of reporting to the Legislative Council Environmental Affairs Panel within this year, if possible”.
Most seminar attendants said it is untenable for the charging level to remain unchanged for years, and the large amounts of reusable public fill produced during different types of construction work requires proper management. According to the Secretary for the Environment
“The current cost of handling construction waste at the landfills has already increased to over $200 per tonne, which exceeds the existing charging level of $125 per tonne and no longer reflects the principle of polluter-pays, while the cost of handling public fill has also far exceeded the current charging level of $27 per tonne,”.
The Government is considering fee adjustment and has been studying its potential impact on illegal dumping of construction waste.
It will also explore measures to provide technical support for the reduction and recycling of construction waste.