Waste recycling policy in Hong Kong

S. A. Chung, Chi Sun Poon

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


The positive non-intervention policy adopted by the Hong Kong Government has successfully led Hong Kong to an economically prosperous stage. Nevertheless, the extension of this policy to the area of waste management and waste recycling is a major reason for the sluggish waste recovery rate in Hong Kong even given the fact that Hong Kong is experiencing perhaps the greatest pressure from waste disposal in the world. The official approach to waste recycling is one of bottom-up promotion and encouragement of recycling through environmental education. While environmental education is indispensable in the course of promoting waste recycling, the use of top-down measures, such as legislation and fiscal policies, may be needed for a sustainable waste management. Waste management in Hong Kong has meant "coping with" the continuous growth in waste volume. However, in other areas of environmental management, such as air, water and noise, economic and regulatory instruments like tax differentiation and legislative control have been employed thus showing that a deviation from the minimal regulation requirement is sometimes considered justifiable. The low priority given to waste management and waste recycling for top-down measures leads to the loss of a lot of precious and non-renewable resources, and detriment to the welfare of future generations.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)21-32
Number of pages12
JournalWaste Management and Research
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 1994


  • bottom-up approach
  • Hong Kong
  • minimal regulation
  • recycling
  • Sustainable waste management
  • top-down policies
  • waste minimization

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Engineering
  • Pollution


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