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Support MSW Waste Charging – We Are Drowning In Waste!
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To develop a levy scheme for municipal solid waste treatment: More details
Sign your support for Municipal Waste (MSW) Charging to Hong Kong Government and legislators. Signatures and comments will be consolidated and submitted to the Bill Committee regularly.
MSW Charging is a waste management policy that has shown dramatic impact on both waste creation and recycling rates in every city, district and country where it has been implemented.
Why does it matter for Hong Kong?
1) Hong Kong is a big household waste producer on a per capita basis
2) Hong Kong’s budding recycling systems need strong, structural support
3) MSW Charging provides a signal and incentive for behaviour change towards a more sustainable lifestyle
Why should you sign?
We need to signal our strong support and give our lawmakers and politicians the courage to move ahead. That’s why this petition matters. Recent research by the Hong Kong Public Opinion Research Institute shows broad support for both the principle of MSW Charging (~70%) and for its design elements (e.g., 65% agrees with the value of the proposed charge and 80% agrees with the length of the proposed transition period). This support holds true across age groups, education levels, and political preferences. With this petition, you can add your voice too!
The bill has already been rescheduled four times since the Bills Committee was established in October last year, without any explanation. If the bill does not clear the final hurdle during this extended LegCo term, we’re back to zero. 10 years of work down the drain. And likely another decade before this cornerstone of service provision and financing in modern societies starts benefiting Hong Kong, its citizens, and its awe-inspiring natural environment.
SIGN TODAY SO YOUR VOICE IS HEARD!
Today Hong Kong’s lawmakers have voted in favour of waste charging (Waste Disposal Amendment Bill 2018).
The 18-months of preparatory period is about to begin! The Government will give out complimentary trash bags to assist citizens adapt to the scheme and also provide assistance to the businesses in handling food waste. More promotional and educational work will be expedited. The Government will continuously consult the opinions of different industries. The official effective date of the waste charging scheme is to be confirmed.
Tomorrow the LegCo will proceed to the debate of the Second Reading, consideration by committee of the whole Council and Third Reading for Waste Disposal (Charging for Municipal Solid Waste) (Amendment) Bill 2018.
This is the fourth rescheduling. The Committee has not provided the reason for the arrangement.
This is the third rescheduling since the Bills Committee was established in October last year. The Committee has not explained why the bill has been rescheduled or proposed a date for its next meeting.
Signatures and comments were submitted to the petition target on 15th, 22nd and 29th March.
We urge members of the Legislative Council to pass the required amendments of the Waste Disposal Ordinance and Waste Disposal Regulation during this term of the Legislative Council. In line with the “polluter-pays” principle, charging for waste is a necessity in any modern society’s waste management toolkit. Legislation for waste charging will promote waste avoidance, strengthen local recycling industries, and allocate the societal cost of waste handling and recycling correctly.
Hong Kong-specific studies commissioned by Drink Without Waste highlight MSW charging as an effective tool towards the recovery of recyclables . With Hong Kong’s recycling industry facing challenges of land tenure and international waste trade restrictions, MSW charging is a timely economic tool to support the long-term sustainability of local processing and recycling businesses. Since the introduction of waste charging in the 1990s, South Korea and Taiwan have improved their recycling rate to 86% and 55% respectively .
Moreover, recent research by the Hong Kong Public Opinion Research Institute shows broad support for both the principle of MSW Charging (~70%) and for its design elements (e.g., 65% agrees with the value of the proposed charge and 80% agrees with the length of the proposed transition period). This support holds true across age groups, education levels, and political preferences .
The latest government figures indicate that the per capita daily MSW disposal rate remains high (1.47kg) while the overall recycling rate has dropped to 29%. The lack of MSW charging is a leading contributing factor to this state of affairs. It is time for Hong Kong to catch up with its neighbours.
We welcome the proposed monthly subsidies for all recipients of the Comprehensive Social Security Assistance Scheme and Higher Old Age Living Allowance. These address concerns that citizens and their representatives may have over the weight of MSW charges on household budgets. Moreover, based on our knowledge of international policies and Hong Kong attitudes towards waste management, the proposed transition period of 12 to 18 months is deemed to be adequate.
 Wealth of Flows (2020) Blueprint: a statutory value-on-return scheme for Hong Kong’s beverage containers (https://bit.ly/2Z3uJ48); Deloitte (2018) Drink Without Waste: Research Report (https://bit.ly/3a97pbK)
 Ministry of Environment (2021) Land & Waste (https://bit.ly/3ap0F9K); World Bank (2018) What a waste 2.0 (https://bit.ly/3u7ZnrB)
 Hong Kong Public Opinion Program of Hong Kong Public Opinion Research Institute (2021) Survey on Municipal Solid Waste Charging Bill
The Single-Use Beverage Packaging Working Group, established in 2017, is a coalition of beverage manufacturers and importers, waste handlers and recyclers, institutions, retailers and NGOs. Our goal is to reduce the volume of used beverage packaging going to waste by 70 to 90% in 2025. Municipal Solid Waste charging will help ensure we can meet this target.