As OOCL London entered the English Channel in early February, the 323-meter vessel owned by Hong Kong’s biggest container line was forced to switch from burning the black sludge known as bunker oil to less polluting fuel. That wasn’t the case in the ship’s home harbor last week.
Pollution in Hong Kong, with the worst roadside smog on record during the six months ended March, has led more people to consider leaving the Chinese city, according to a survey by a policy think tank.
Maersk Line, the world’s biggest container-shipping company, threatened to stop using cleaner fuel at Hong Kong port from next year if the government doesn’t mandate higher quality oil for carriers berthing in the city.
Hong Kong will ban high-polluting vehicles and offer subsidies to replace diesel-powered buses and trucks, after 15 years of clean-air measures failed to limit smog responsible for more than 3,000 premature deaths a year.
Hong Kong’s Legislative Council approved a package that sets the pace for expanding the city’s democracy, overcoming concerns from opponents that the plan won’t move it down the path of universal suffrage.
Stephen Chung gave up on buying an apartment in Hong Kong after realizing it would take him 10 years to save the $115,000 deposit for a two-bedroom box in the northern part of the former British colony. He isn’t expecting any help from the city’s next leader.
Hong Kong air pollution reached “very high” levels at all three roadside station monitoring stations, prompting the government to advise people with heart or respiratory problems to avoid long stays in heavy traffic.