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Scope of pilot scheme for water-cooled air-con systems extended

The Government today (May 31) announced that the pilot scheme to allow the use of fresh water for evaporative cooling in air-conditioning systems in non-domestic developments would be extended for two years to May 31, 2004.

The scope of the scheme will also be expanded to cover a total of 28 designated areas in the territory.

The scheme was first launched on June 1, 2000 for two years with six designated areas. It was then expanded in June 2001 for inclusion of 11 additional areas in the scheme. In view of the feedback from owners of non-domestic buildings on the scheme, the Government decided to further extend its scope.

The 28 designated areas for implementation of the scheme comprise six on Hong Kong Island, 11 in Kowloon and 11 in the New Territories. Of them, 11 are newly-designated. Meanwhile, the sizes of 11 existing areas have been enlarged and the rest remain unchanged.

The pilot scheme is an initiative by a working group, comprising representatives from relevant bureaux and departments, to promote energy efficiency through the use of fresh water for air conditioning system.

It includes the Works Bureau, the Environment and Food Bureau and eight departments, namely the Buildings Department, Drainage Services Department , Electrical and Mechanical Services Department, Environmental Protection Department, Department of Health, Lands Department, Planning Department and Water Supplies Department.

The aims of this pilot scheme are:

* to promote energy efficient water-cooled air conditioning systems;

* to assess the impacts of such systems in infrastructure;

* to assess the health and environmental effects of such systems; and

* to provide information for studying the implementation of water-cooled air-conditioning systems in Hong Kong.

Under the scheme, owners of existing or new non-domestic buildings in the designated areas may apply to the Water Supplies Department for approval of water supplies, and send a copy of the application to the Electrical and Mechanical Services Department for vetting of design and registration of the cooling towers.

Applicants are also required to submit plans on the construction of supporting framework for approval by Buildings Department if a framework is required in the installation of cooling towers.

The location plans of all designated areas under the scheme can be viewed at EMSD website: http://www.emsd.gov.hk/

Detailed application procedures and the operation and maintenance requirements are available from the Energy Efficiency Office of the Electrical and Mechanical Services Department on 11/F, 111 Leighton Road, Causeway Bay, Hong Kong. For enquiries, please call 2882 8011.

End/Friday, May 31, 2002

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