CityU scores huge government environment contract
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The outstanding efforts and achievements of City University of Hong Kong (CityU) in marine environmental research have been recognised and rewarded with an $8.7 million government consultancy project that will direct the development of a new set of water quality standards, enabling Hong Kong to more effectively protect our marine environment and its resources.
The consultancy project, awarded to CityU at a contract signing ceremony on 28 October, was commissioned by the Environmental Protection Department and will form part of the blueprint on the future management and control of water quality in Hong Kong.
Leading the consultancy project, Professor (Chair) Rudolf Wu Shiu-sun, from the Department of Biology and Chemistry at CityU, said the new water quality standards to be developed will have a long term and significant impact on prospective policies on pollution control and marine environmental management in Hong Kong.
Existing water quality standards have been in use for more than 20 years and, in view of the significant advances in scientific knowledge and experience in water quality control, there is an urgent need to review these standards.
“The results of this study will provide a scientific and legal framework for managing our marine environment and protecting marine resources in the many years to come,” Professor Wu said.
“The present engagement by the Government demonstrates that our research excellence is built not only upon strong scientific foundations but also has high application values. We hope our work will make a significant contributions and impact to the management of the marine environment in Hong Kong,” he added.
At present, different parts of Hong Kong coastal waters cater for different uses. The consultancy team, comprising members Dr Doris Au Wai-ting, Dr Richard Kong Yuen-chong and Dr Paul Shin Kam-shing, Associate Professors from the Department of Biology and Chemistry, will review and examine these various usages and use a risk-assessment approach to determine the most appropriate level of water quality to support each usage, so as to ensure that both over- and under-protection would not occur.
The study will be joined by an Hyder Consulting Limited, who will consider the technical attainability and potential socio-economic impact. Public consultation will be carried out to gauge views from different sectors of the community to build consensus in the review process.