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Weekly News Digest 1 – 8 January 2016

On wildlife conservation:
Four arrested for trying to smuggle eels into Hong Kong
Four individuals were arrested by Hong Kong customs yesterday for trying to smuggle around 109 kilograms of European eel through Hong Kong International Airport.

Customs seize 18kg of ivory products at the airport
Hong Kong authorities have arrested an airline passenger on Sunday after finding 18 kilograms of ivory products in his luggage.

On animal welfare:
Dog travels to Japan inside luggage without owner’s knowledge
A Schnauzer sneaked into a suitcase and traveled all the way to Japan before the dog’s owner found his uninvited companion seven hours later.

Man arrested for abusing dogs with bleach and mop
Police said the man was accused of pouring bleach on two dogs tied to the gate of a parking lot on Tai Yip Street in Kowloon Bay at around 5am on Monday last week.

Four newborn puppies found abandoned in Tuen Mun garbage bin
A man was walking his dog near a garbage station in Tuen Mun and found four newborn puppies curled up like furry balls inside the bin. At the moment, he and his friends are taking care of the puppies, but they hope animal lovers will come forward and offer to adopt them.

On land development:
Rural council eyes green zone plots for building small houses
According to a leaked draft of a report compiled by the Heung Yee Kuk recently, releasing the green belt zones for residential development would not only help boost land supply, it will also enable the Government to reap political benefits by satisfying the demands of indigenous inhabitants.

On natural conservation:
Dead porpoise washed ashore among trash in Cheung Chau
The carcass of a young finless porpoise was discovered and taken away by police. The Agriculture, Fisheries and Conservation Department said the cause of death of the stranded animal cannot be ascertained at this stage.

On pollution:
HK air quality ‘better’ in 2015 but some areas still suffering

On waste:
Museum’s artwork of rubbish puts ocean waste in focus
The exhibition combines art and science by showcasing works of art using plastic rubbish collected from the world’s seas to illustrate how such waste is threatening the marine ecosystem. The exhibition will run until February 17. Admission is free for the month of January.

More drinking fountains suggested to cut plastic waste
Some lawmakers have urged the Government to provide more drinking fountains in public places to help reduce plastic waste generated from beverage bottles. But, development Secretary Paul Chan said the rail operator wouldn’t be able to do it because of hygiene reasons.

Government press release:
Hong Kong Customs seizes suspected worked ivory at airport

LCQ1: Provision of drinking fountains in public places

LCQ9: Marine dumping

LCQ17: Measures to reduce the emissions of ocean-going vessels at berth