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Be aware of landslide risk (31/5/2015)

Last year, the Civil Engineering and Development Department (CEDD) received 237 landslide reports. We were grateful that not only was it fewer than the average of 300 cases per year that we have had over the last 25 years, but also that there were no casualties. Nonetheless, we still have to be well prepared, especially in light of the looming challenges brought about by extreme weather. This year, the Hong Kong Observatory issued a warning that the typhoon season may begin as early as June, and forecast that there will be four to seven tropical cyclones entering the 500-kilometre radius of Hong Kong this year. As typhoons and heavy rainstorms may lead to landslides, the best way to prepare is to do maintenance work on the slopes in advance......

Thinking about our future while revisiting history (24/5/2015)

A shortage of water resources is a major challenge in many parts of the world today. In addition, climate change is leading to the increasing occurrence of extreme weather, including long-lasting droughts and heavy rainstorms. Recently, both California in the United States and Taiwan had to implement water rationing due to droughts. In Hong Kong, it was only last week that we finally received some heavy rainfall after a relatively dry first five months, and many reservoirs in the territory have a low level of water storage. Furthermore, the Hong Kong Observatory has forecast that total rainfall in the territory will be relatively low this year......

Let's work together to save more energy (17/5/2015)

In this highly urbanised city of Hong Kong, most of our daily activities take place inside buildings. Facilities like lighting, air-conditioning and lifts have become an indispensable part of our daily life. They have made our lives more convenient and comfortable but they also consume lots of energy. Currently, about 90 per cent of our electricity consumption takes place in buildings, and electricity thus accounts for 60 per cent of the greenhouse gas emissions in Hong Kong. In view of this, promoting environmental protection and energy saving in both public and private buildings is important in reducing energy consumption in Hong Kong......

Taking a step forward without surrendering our ideals (10/5/2015)

With the arrival of May the issue of constitutional reform, on which the future development of Hong Kong hinges, is nearing the moment of truth. As a member of the Government’s political team, it is my duty to help promote the Government’s constitutional reform package. Last Saturday, I joined other teammates to visit the districts and distribute leaflets, with a view to soliciting public support for the Government’s proposals. As there are different views in the community over this controversial issue, we understood that Government officials would not be universally greeted by supportive citizens during our district visits, but would also meet with opposing voices, criticism and even verbal attacks. This is exactly why Hong Kong is valued as a free and open civic society. We are obliged to listen to different views with humility and we will keep up our efforts to win public support with utmost sincerity......

The CIC Innovation Award (3/5/2015)

The construction industry in Hong Kong has thrived in recent years. However, to cope with the consistently huge amount of construction output and to address the shortage of skilled workers, we have to resort to innovation and technology to save manpower and enhance productivity. The Construction Industry Council (CIC), universities, professionals from the construction and engineering industries and contractors all attach great importance to this issue and contribute substantial resources, and over the past few years we have achieved some encouraging results. For example, we have developed Building Information Modelling (BIM) and cloud storage in engineering design and construction. To promote green building, we are using an increasing volume of low carbon materials and renewable energy equipment. We are also increasingly making use of mechanical operations and prefabricated components to enhance safety and efficiency during construction works......


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