Director of Lands,
The Green Earth has found numerous lead bullets and fragments of shooting targets at the countryside near the HKGC. Such kind of waste has also scattered across Tai Lam Country Park, including a canal hundreds of meters away from the Club, which extends to Shing Mun Reservoir, a source of freshwater supply for Hong Kong.
The Water Supplies Department issued a subpoena to HKGC last year, where the Club was charged with “depositing solid matters in waterworks”. The court ruled that the evidence was established however, due to error of omission in the exhibits kept by the department, the magistrate adjudicated HKGC was exonerated on July 17 2020. The magistrate urged the HKGC to follow up, and to have good conscience to bear responsibility for their waste and its impact to the environment.
The Green Earth has closely monitored the situation in the past few years and we have revisited the scene recently for investigation. The waste problem remains and has in fact significantly worsened. The land used by HKGC is granted by the Government at a nominal land rent of HKD 1,000 under the “Private Recreational Leases” and is under supervision of the Lands Department. In light of the on-going waste problem, it raises questions if the Lands Department has regularly inspected HKGC to ensure it has acted according to the land lease agreement to avoid creating environmental impacts?
We do not oppose to shooting activities but the host of the activities should not leave lead bullets, fragments of shooting targets and any other waste in the countryside. We urge the Lands Department to investigate the issue and closely monitor HKGC to ensure the Club has acted according to the environmental management plan – including setting up of pellet barriers, reorienting the direction of shooting and arranging regular clean-ups of lead bullets and other waste in order to safeguard Tai Lam Country Park and the freshwater system for the safety of the general public.