China Concrete’s Permanent Solution to Factory Relocation Proposal Ignored by Government Use of Temporary Yau Tong Factory Improvement Solution for License Renewal | Taiwan News
HONG KONG SAR – Media reach – June 7, 2021 – China Concrete Company Limited (the “Company”) filed an appeal with the Department of Environmental Protection (EPD) in mid-last month regarding the Department’s decision to deny the license renewal application for its storage facility. cement from Yau Tong. The Company notes that the recent rejection of EPD not only lacked strong justification, but that the procedure also deviated from its usual practice. The Company will continue to improve the operating conditions of its plant and will endeavor to obtain the renewal of its license. The Company also expresses its willingness to build a high-tech non-polluting concrete batching plant and to abandon the existing plant after having identified a suitable site.
The Company mentions that upon receipt of the EPD’s opinion of April 29 concerning the rejection of the renewal of the license for the cement storage facility at its Yau Tong plant, it filed an appeal on May 18. and will be submitting new documents to the appeal committee shortly. The EPD rejection process did not follow previous similar renewal denials received by the industry. In its rejection notice, the EPD only stated that “the plant has had poor environmental performance in the past. operation. “Yet such a justification was far-fetched and was different from the usual practice of providing solid evidence. The EPD used to issue a warning before subsequently denying renewal requests, but the company received a direct rejection without warning.The Company believes that the EPD made this decision under pressure from opposition from a minority of the public.
Being a local business with deep roots in Hong Kong for over three decades, the company operates its production facility alongside a luxury housing site developed by three China-funded real estate developers (Minmetals Land, Yuexiu Property and Qingjian Realty ). The company believes that the EPD’s decision was made under pressure from the voice of the opposition led by the developers, and the decision was neither impartial nor justified. The company has manufactured concrete materials essential for Hong Kong infrastructure and building construction over the years. The Company expresses its disappointment at the lack of increased support from the government.
Mr. Bono Tsang of China Concrete Company Limited added that the factory is still in operation and will continue to improve its production procedures, paying special attention to preventing dust leaks and keeping the surrounding roads clean. The factory has also planned future measures on the following points: further reduction of air pollution; more efficient treatment of wastewater and waste; keep cement trucks dry and clean when leaving the plant; and the hiring of an independent third-party environmental manager to oversee the operations of the company.
Mr. Bono Tsang admits that improving the operation of the existing plant is only a temporary solution. A permanent solution is to move the plant to another site. “As early as May of last year, we expressed to the government our willingness to relocate the plant despite a huge capital cost, and we proactively offered temporary locations. Our idea is to build a high-tech interior, without pollution and respectful of the environment. concrete plant. It will become a model for similar plants around the world.
Incidentally, the Company will be issuing an open letter in a newspaper tomorrow (June 8) (please refer to the attachment for details) in response to concerns from residents, politicians and the media regarding the operation of the production plant. of the Company’s concrete in Yau Tong. The “Open Letter to Hong Kong Citizens” titled “Our Love for Hong Kong Planted on Concrete” stated that the company’s concrete plant in Yau Tong was built in the mid-1980s. The Company recalled: Yau Tong was deserted and there were no more residential houses at that time. There were only a few ship repair factories on the verge of closing. Concrete was an essential material for construction projects, and it should be used within two hours of production. Therefore, Yau Tong was then ideal for the production of concrete, a place far from residential areas and near the sea.
The Company believed that the recent controversy over the operation of the Yau Tong factory was a legacy of the past, as the factory had been erected in Yau Tong long before the houses were built. The government was forced to find a long term solution to fix the problem. The company shared the concerns of the people of Yau Tong regarding health and the living environment, and was willing to comply and meet the expectations of the public. That said, the plant has been in operation for 20 years. Despite our best efforts, there are still limits on how we can improve the facilities. This means that as long as the factory is still in operation here, it is unable to fully meet the expectations of the public.
The Company also made two clarifications regarding the plant descriptions in media reports:
- That the operation of the plant caused the pollution of the neighboring sea water, and therefore the disappearance of the fish. In fact, a wholesale fish market operated by the Fish Marketing Office next to the factory pumps seawater there every day to feed the fresh fish. This proves the normal water quality there.
- Criticism of cement trucks that make roads slippery, present dangers and cause traffic jams. Such and other pollution problems can also be created by buses, container trucks, vehicles carrying fish and transporting recycled waste that use the same routes. It is therefore unfair to lay all the blame on the cement trucks.
The Company states that it will continue to pay attention to comments from all parties on the operation of the concrete plant and that it strongly believes in working with government and the public to achieve a win-win solution.