New conservation strategy suggested

July 30, 2022

Hong Kong should adopt a new conservation approach by identifying the land that should remain protected while recovering those that have been abandoned and deteriorated, Secretary for Environment & Ecology Tse Chin-wan said today.


Mr Tse made the remarks during a media session after attending a radio programme this morning.


He pointed out that the city's current conservation strategy is a passive approach which does not work very well.


“Our conservation strategy is done by assigning certain land to be undeveloped. For example, through the planning process, we may assign a certain piece of land to be a conservation area. In that area, no development will be allowed.


“Of course, that has served the purpose of conservation to some extent, but actually we have also seen that because of lack of management and lack of attention, the conservation value of that piece of land can be deteriorating.


“The second angle is that Hong Kong is a city where land is very scarce. We need land for development and if we do nothing and continue our current approach of conservation, then conservation will be under a lot of pressure.”


He emphasised that Hong Kong should implement a more proactive conservation strategy that will enhance its ecological protection and achieve better biodiversity outcomes.


“Under that strategy, we should identify those areas with high conservation value and try to recover the adjacent land which have been abandoned and deteriorated, and as such have lost its conservation value. We should recover those areas so that we can form a contiguous and larger piece of land for conservation.”


Mr Tse said the Agriculture, Fisheries & Conservation Department is conducting a study on adopting the new approach in the Northern Metropolis project, under which a wetland park of around 2,000 hectares will be formed after the land to be protected is identified.


“Through the study, they will identify where should be the core area to be protected, where should be assigned as the adjacent land to be recovered and where should be the boundary of the new wetland park.


“The boundary of the wetland park may not be the same as the current boundary of wetland protection area or wetland buffer area.” he added. 

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