The Government will "roll out a territory-wide source separation campaign to encourage households to separate waste at source, thereby improving recovery and reducing waste."¡VThe Chief Executive in his 2005 Policy Agenda.


4.1 Our Goals

The Programme on Source Separation of Domestic Waste was established by the Environmental Protection Department (EPD) to recover more domestic waste for re-use and recycling, with the aim of reducing waste loads and extending the life of existing landfills. Some success has already been achieved in domestic waste reduction, with a cumulative decrease of 13% since 2000 and a 3% decrease in 2005 alone. However, there is still much room for improvement.

About 40% of municipal solid waste is recovered each year, but most of that comes from the commercial and industrial sectors, not households. In 2005 only 16% of domestic waste was recovered. We believe this can be improved substantially and has set the following targets:

  • To have 80% of Hong Kong's population recovering their waste for re-use and recycling by 2010 through source separation of domestic waste.

  • To increase domestic waste recovery to 26% by 2012 through source separation of domestic waste and other measures set out in the "Policy Framework for the Management of Municipal Solid Waste in Hong Kong (2005-2014)" issued in December 2005.


4.2 How the Programme Works

The Programme on Source Separation of Domestic Waste was launched territory-wide in January 2005 to expand the types of waste collected for re-use and recycling, and to make it as easy as possible for every household in Hong Kong to participate. By 2010, more than 1,300 housing estates representing 80% of the population hopefully will have joined the programme.



Each participating housing estate / building adopts a waste separation and recovery system adapted to their physical constraints and other characteristics. They can install suitable waste separation facilities at convenient locations, such as refuse rooms and staircase landings on each floor. They can also expand the types of recyclables accepted beyond waste paper, aluminium cans and plastic bottles, to include such everyday items as plastic shopping bags, compact discs and metal biscuit tins.


This approach has resulted from trials on various domestic waste separation and recovery systems. It recognises that Hong Kong buildings vary greatly in their layout, design and other characteristics, and that property managers and owners should be given flexibility in deciding which system to adopt.