Environmental Protection Department, Hong Kong Housing Authority expand glass recycling program to 14 new areas in East Kowloon district in Hong Kong; glass bottles collected are recycled into glass sand to make eco-friendly paving blocks

HONG KONG , June 1, 2012 (press release) – The Pilot Programme on Source Separation of Glass Bottles launched by the Environmental Protection Department (EPD) in collaboration with the Hong Kong Housing Authority (HKHA) at public rental housing (PRH) estates has been extended to another 14 estates in East Kowloon. This brings the total number of estates joining the programme to 20 and will enable more people to participate in glass recycling for a greener Hong Kong.

An EPD spokesman said today (June 1) the extension of the pilot programme by the EPD and the HKHA aims to further promote the recycling of glass bottles. Since late last month, the programme has been extended to cover an additional 14 PRH estates in East Kowloon, namely Choi Fook Estate, Choi Tak Estate, Kai Tin Estate, Ko Cheung Court, Kwong Tin Estate, Lam Tin Estate, On Tin Estate, Ping Tin Estate, Po Tat Estate, Sau Mau Ping Estate, Sau Mau Ping South Estate, Tsui Ping (South) Estate, Wan Hon Estate and Yau Tong Estate.

Light green glass bottle recycling bins have been placed alongside the three coloured waste separation bins at the lobbies or near the entrances of residential blocks at the participating estates, and are handy for residents to separate waste for recycling in their daily life. In light of the experience gathered in the first phase of the programme, the design of the glass bottle recycling bins has been refined, with shock absorption and sound insulation functions enhanced to avoid causing noise nuisance to nearby residents when people discard glass bottles in the recycling bins. The new front-loading design also helps reduce the need for manual lifting by cleaning workers in collecting the glass bottles, further safeguarding their occupational safety and health.

"The Government has all along encouraged the public to participate in waste separation at source so as to reduce waste disposal and promote recycling, and hence relieve the pressure on landfills.

The extension of the pilot programme to more PRH estates will enable greater public participation in source separation of waste. It will also provide valuable experience and reference data for full implementation of territory-wide glass bottle recycling in future," the EPD spokesman said.

"The EPD and the HKHA will continue to explore how the programme could be extended further and the next target is to cover the remaining eight PRH estates in Kwun Tong District in East Kowloon. They are Choi Hung Estate, Kai Yip Estate, Ko Yee Estate, Lei Yue Mun Estate, Lok Wah (North) Estate, Lok Wah (South) Estate, Ping Shek Estate and Wo Lok Estate by end of this year.

Meanwhile, the EPD and relevant departments are also proactively looking into other feasible recycling outlets for glass," the spokesman added.

The EPD and the HKHA jointly launched the Pilot Programme on Source Separation of Glass Bottles in December 2010 at six PRH estates in East Kowloon, namely Choi Ying Estate, Shun Lee Estate, Shun On Estate, Shun Tin Estate, Upper Ngau Tau Kok Estate and Yau Lai Estate. By the end of April 2012, around 97 tonnes of glass (or some 240,000 glass containers) had been collected for recycling under the pilot programme. The results have been encouraging.

The waste glass bottles collected under the programme are mainly recycled into glass sand for the production of eco-friendly paving blocks.

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