Hong Kong to Remove Kerbside Bins to Encourage Better Disposal Habits
July 20, 2023
Environmental authorities will gradually limit the number of rubbish bins on the streets of Hong Kong in an effort to encourage residents to bring their waste home and develop better waste disposal habits.
This change comes after observing how other countries have remedied street pollution by removing kerbside garbage bins.
Government statistics show that Hong Kong had approximately 11,700 kerbside bins in March to accommodate its population of 7.3 million, drawing comparisons to other cities with a significantly lower bin to citizen ratio. For instance, Seoul carries 1,000 bins for its population of 9.7 million.
On July 14, the Hong Kong Legislative Council approved a near two-decade long plan to charge residents for their waste, starting from April 1. Residents will soon be required to pay 11 HK cents for each litre of garbage they dispose, fitted into government-designated bags.
A half-year grace period is given to residents after the levy is imposed, during which officials will remind residents to comply with the scheme. Failure to dispose after this grace period is over will result in a HK$1,500 fine, and residents could face a higher fine of HK$3,000 if caught leaving their garbage out on the street.
Stronger public littering enforcement is also called upon, with the penalty doubling to HK$3,000 in October from the current penalty of HK$1,500. The penalties for unlawful shop extensions and illegal dumping of construction waste will also be raised to HK$6,000, up from the current HK$1,500.
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