Hoi Ha Campaign Heats Up

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Chloe Ng took in today’s statement from Friends of Hoi Ha who are keeping up the fight to save Hoi Ha’s unique ecological environment.

The only areas protected are those that have never been under threat of development.

Friends of Hoi Ha (FOHH) has called for action to stop small house development in of Hoi Ha that is incompatible with its high ecological value and status as a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI). The government has allocated 90% of the Hoi Ha enclave for housing development and only 10% for country parks.

Those areas to be listed as country parks are fragmented small pieces which do not have inherent development threat.  In other words, the only areas protected are those that have never been under threat of development.

FOHH is unhappy about the lack of planning of the government.  Allowing the building of houses means basic infrastructure like roads will be constructed as well, further despoiling the landscape.

They mentioned 2 core principles of planning that the government should follow:

  • No net loss of countryside land and
  • No violation of parks integrity.

Damage to Hoi Ha will not be tolerated by FOHH. If the government is not willing to adhere to the above principles, FOHH will continue to fight the battle to save this area.

It seems that there is an exchange of roles between government and the citizens. On one hand, it was the government who incorporates natural assets into country parks for better recreational facilities in 1970s. However, it is the government who does not stop them from being damaged today, while the citizens support conservation. FOHH does not think that the government should allow developers to provide luxurious villas for the rich, at the expense of the recreation of all Hong Kong citizens.

FOHH is launching an advertising campaign on Feb 11 to arouse the awareness of citizens and has launched a website for the public to allow them to demonstrate their support.