- WE PETITION
- Mr Paul Chan, Secretary for DevelopmentMr Thomas Chow, Permanent Secretary for Development, Chairman of TPB
- Object to plans to develop and destroy Hoi Ha
Take a walk with us in and around Hoi Ha Marine Park SSSI and learn about the threats to the the landscape and ecology of this area of outstanding natural beauty and high ecological value. Woodland, streams, marshland and marine park are all under threat
Hoi Ha is one of Hong Kong’s most beautiful seaside villages, surrounded by Country Park hillside and fronted by Hoi Ha Marine Park, which is a Site of Special Scientific Interest with 64 species of coral. The area is rich in species of Conservation Interest not just in the sea but also on land, along the Hoi Ha stream, in the woodland, on the abandoned agricultural land and in the marshes.
Hoi Ha has no public sewage system and so all of the houses will need septic tanks, effluent from which will percolate through the soil into the Hoi Ha Stream and into the Marine Park.
Hopes have been dashed that the Town Planning Board would zone this environmentally-sensitive area in order to give priority to the landscape and to the environment. Instead, the TPB has come out on the side of development with proposals to triple the size of the village in a large V-zone with room for up to 100 houses and an adjacent zone of Green Belt, which is already being considered as a reservoir of future building land. These areas, which together comprise about 50% of the Development Permission Area, are on a mixture of mature woodland and on farmland which was abandoned more than 40 years ago and has reverted to shrubland habitat.
Facebook: Save Hoi Ha
With reference to the Draft of the Outline Zoning Plan of Hoi Ha which is presently being considered by the Town Planning Board, the undersigned PETITION the Hong Kong Government’s Town Planning Board:
1. To protect properly this area of outstanding natural beauty and high ecological value by zoning for conservation and not for development.
2. To consider their responsibilities under the Convention on Biodiversity, in particular Article 8 (e), which states that the Government has a responsibility to “Promote environmentally sound and sustainable development in areas adjacent to protected areas with a view to furthering protection of these areas.”
3. To be mindful of the Law in their zoning, respect the 100 metre set-back distance between septic tanks and Hoi Ha Wan Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) and impose a 30 metre set-back distance between septic tanks and streams. These measures are designed to prevent any development that would be in breach of the Law and/or cause pollution to Hoi Ha Wan.
4. To support the recommendations submitted to the Board by Non-Governmental Organisations, including the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF), Kadoorie Farm and Botanic Garden (KFBG) and Friends of Hoi Ha (FOHH) which detail the proper protection of the flora, fauna, landscape and hydrology of this area.
5. To re-designate the proposed Green Belt Area as Conservation Area.
6. To re-designate the proposed westward extension of the V-zone as Conservation Area.
7. To utilise an up-to-date map for planning purposes, that accurately shows the coastal erosion and the current boundaries of the beaches.
8. To increase the depth of the entire proposed Coastal Protection Area to a minimum buffer zone of 30 metres starting at the actual boundary of the Marine Park, not at an incorrect point on an inaccurate map.
9. To include the old walled village, a Site of Archaeological Interest, in the Coastal Protection Area, which would protect it from being bulldozed and redeveloped, and would allow it to be restored in the original style on the original footprint.
10. To move the Column 1 - “Always Allowed” - status of Agricultural Use in the definitions of Conservation Area and Coastal Protection Area into Column 2 – requiring the authorisation of the Town Planning Board. This is to prevent Agricultural activities being used as pretence to cover the trashing of areas prior to re-development.
11. To recommend to the Country and Marine Parks Authority that all of the Development Permission Area be subsumed into the Country and Marine Parks.
12. To recommend that all future Small House Applications be relocated to land outside the Hoi Ha enclave and outside Sai Kung Country Park, well away from environmentally sensitive areas of high landscape value.
Hoi Ha Marine Park SSSI is to be sacrificed to the Small House Policy.
Will they throw the Draft Outline Zoning Plan back to the Planning Department and AFCD and ask them to do better?
The Town Planning Board received over 30,000 representations and comments on the draft Outline Zoning Plans for Hoi Ha, Pak Lap and So Lo Pun. Everyone has now received an invitation to be heard by the Board. The hearings will start 28 April and are expected to end mid-May.
We urge you to try and present your personal view. It is important to demonstrate that safeguarding the Country Parks is a matter of great public concern.
In your reply to the Town Planning Board on or before 8 April please include:
1.The estimated time needed for your presentation
“I will need xx minutes for my presentation.”;
2.If necessary, request to be heard in a morning or afternoon session
“I prefer to be heard in the morning/afternoon due to other commitments.”;
3.Request to be heard on a Saturday if you are not available on a weekday
“I wish to be heard on a Saturday due to work commitments.”
Don’t hesitate to send us your queries at firstname.lastname@example.org. We will publish next week a “How to make a presentation to the Town Planning Board” on our website.
Together We Can Save Our Country Parks!
P.S. We don’t promote the use of proxies. However, if you have a speech, video or presentation which you wish ‘A Member of the Save Our Country Park Alliance’ to deliver, please send us the signed (signature, name and date) proxy form via fax or email. We will complete the details of the representative.
Save Our Country Parks
Please spread the word and see if we can reach this figure today.
LETTER TO TOWN PLANNING BOARD OBJECTING TO HOI HA’S DRAFT OUTLINE ZONING PLAN
Please write a letter (sample below) to the TPB before the end of day, Wednesday 27 November. Numbers count, so please write and share!
Please personalize this by adding your own introductory paragraph so that all the letters received are slightly different.
Chairman, Town Planning Board
Email address: email@example.com
Draft Hoi Ha Outline Zoning Plan No: S/NE-HH/1
I am writing in support of the inclusion of the Hoi Ha enclave into Sai Kung Country Park and into Hoi Ha Marine Park and urge the Town Planning Board to suggest this.
In the interim, I support the proper zoning of Hoi Ha Marine Park for conservation, and object to the Town Planning Board’s Draft Outline Zoning Plan, which has zoned Hoi Ha for development. Green Belt should be replaced with Conservation Area, the V-zone should be much-reduced and limited to the existing village cluster, and the draft expanded V-Zone should be rezoned as Conservation Area.
My reasons for objecting are these:
• The requirement for an enlarged V-zone has been based on an unrealistic assessment of the need for housing.
• The Town Planning Board has been given inaccurate maps and incomplete and misleading data on the environmental and landscape value of the V-zone and Green Belt areas.
• The building of a large number of houses equipped with Septic Tanks will pollute Hoi Ha Wan, will kill the marine life and may make the beaches unsafe for bathing.
• The coastline is of environmental importance and needs to be protected by a buffer zone of Coastal Protection Area at least 30 metres from the shore.
• The Hoi Ha Stream is of environmental importance and needs to be protected by a buffer zone of Conservation Area at least 30 metres wide.
PETITION ENDS 24 December 2014
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Chair of environmental NGO, Friends of Hoi Ha