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Advisory Council on the Environment

Information on Provisional Urban Council's
Greening Policy and Green Hong Kong Campaign

 

(ACE Paper 18/99)
For information

INTRODUCTION

This paper explains the Provisional Urban Council's (PUC) Greening Policy and its Green Hong Kong Campaign.

BACKGROUND

2.Over the years, the Urban Council has been responsible for providing and maintaining parks, gardens and other types of public open space in the urban area. The Council has been working closely with various Government departments to provide landscape planting for these recreation facilities through its executive arm, the Urban Services Department (USD), which is responsible for formulating policies, compiling greening plans and implementing planting programmes.

3.In 1993, the Council established a Working Group to launch a campaign to further its commitment in greening the urban area and encourage the community to support this initiative. Since then, extensive tree planting programmes have been carried out in public streets, along highways, underneath flyovers and on stabilized slopes to supplement the major planting programme in parks. In addition, various promotion programmes have been organised to encourage greening of school campuses, home gardening and good practices in the landscape profession. This Campaign is now in its seventh year and consists of planting and community activity programmes.

URBAN COUNCIL'S GREENING POLICIES

4.Following the adoption in 1993 and refinement in the intervening years, the Council's current greening policies for improving the city landscape were further endorsed under the Five-Year Plan of its Recreation Select Committee in June 1997, and they are summarized as follows -

 

(a) To provide more planting sites

The Council now manages 652 hectares of public recreation areas. Most of these areas are developed into parks and gardens which contain a wide range of leisure facilities, including landscape planting. In addition, it also manages 69 hectares of amenity areas that are used solely for landscape planting. Its goal is to seek more sites to further expanding its landscaping and greening initiatives.

(b) To enhance the urban landscape

This is achieved through the following work programmes -

 

(i) Annual planting programmes in parks and gardens under which some 0.8 million of trees, shrubs and seasonal flowers are planted each year and provision of landscape planting for new projects;
(ii) Landscape Improvement Programmes for existing roadside amenity planting; and
(iii) Street Tree Planting and Urban Slope Planting programmes of the on-going Green Hong Kong Campaign.
(c) To preserve trees

The preservation of trees is a key aspect of the Council's greening policies and arboricultural maintenance is carried out to ensure that trees under its jurisdiction are in good health. An Urban Tree Inventory is being maintained to facilitate effective management and every tree removal has to be carefully investigated. Only in exceptional circumstances will tree felling be permitted.

(d) To create greater public awareness for greening

Publicity for greening the city is conveyed through the Green Hong Kong Campaign which is meant to encourage greater green-consciousness amongst the public, private developers and professionals involved in development projects.

1999/2000 GREEN HONG KONG CAMPAIGN PROGRAMME

5.The Council's Green Hong Kong Campaign will be in its seventh year in 1999/2000. Over the past few years, the Campaign's activity programme, which is organized in conjunction with a comprehensive publicity programme, has been broadened to cover four key areas, namely Community Involvement, Education Activity, Tree Planting and Research. The budget for this year's campaign is $9.8 million. To illustrate what an annual Campaign encompasses, the 1999/2000 programme is described below -

(A) Tree Planting and Preservation Programme

This programme includes the planting of 600 street trees, 900 beach trees and 20,000 saplings on stabilized slopes in the urban area and a new project to preserve roadside Champion Trees by improving their growing environment.

(B) Research - Identification of Potential Street Tree Planting Sites

All the potential street tree planting sites identified by the 1994 Tree Survey will soon be exhausted. In order to maintain a systematic approach in this area of work, another survey for identification of potential planting sites and formulation of a new planting plan will be conducted later this year. Close liaison is maintained with the University of Hong Kong on different aspects of research. Seed exchange programmes are also arranged with overseas botanical institutions for introduction of exotic plants into Hong Kong.

(C) Education Programme

This programme aims at disseminating green knowledge through the production of educational materials, the Green School Award Scheme, a Green Hong Kong Camp and labelling of street trees which will help USD to keep a record of street trees and also indicate to the public the species of trees planted.

(D) Community Involvement Programme

This programme consists of four parts -

 

(a) the Green Hong Kong Ambassadors Scheme which aims at recruiting volunteers from members of the public to serve in the Green Hong Kong Campaign activities and undertake simple maintenance tasks in parks and for street trees. There are currently 1,500 Ambassadors registered and the goal is to increase the membership to 2,500;
(b) the "Community Planting Days" programme which will involve the public in minor neighbourhood greening projects;
(c) a mini theme flower show which will be organised jointly with local horticultural associations; and
(d) a new Green Hong Kong Activities Funding Scheme which aims at encouraging more Green Hong Kong activities organised by local communities. Under this Funding Scheme, local green groups, schools and registered community organizations may apply for a small subsidy to help them organise activities such as tree planting and maintenance, exhibitions and essay writing competitions related to greening.

PLANTING STATISTICS

6.Since the inception of the Green Hong Kong Campaign in 1993/94, USD has added some 5,500 street trees and 150,000 tree saplings on stabilized slopes to supplement its major planting programme in parks and playgrounds. The planting statistics of the last six years and the target figures of 1999/2000 are annexed.

SUMMARY

7.To summarize, the Council realizes that its Green Hong Kong Campaign is a long term project and is fully committed to continuing with its two-prong approach of planting more trees and enlisting the support of the community.


Urban Services Department
May 1999

Annex

 

Statistics on Planting by UC/USD
1993/94-1998/99

The planting statistics of the last six years and the target figures of 1999/2000 are shown below:

 

Year Trees Shrubs Seasonal flowers Total
1993/94 25,000 668,000 199,000 892,000
1994/95 35,000 696,000 180,000 911,000
1995/96 48,000 728,000 197,000 973,000
1996/97 40,000 826,000 242,000 1,108,000
1997/98 27,000 921,000 359,000 1,307,000
1998/99 33,000 1,000,000 300,000 1,333,000
1999/2000 35,000 1,000,000 350,000 1,385,000



 
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