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Transcript of SETW's media session

Following is a transcript (English portion) of the media session by the Secretary for the Environment, Transport and Works, Dr Sarah Liao, today (June 14) on media reports on dioxin at the Tamar site area:

Reporter: (contamination found at the Tamar site)

Dr Liao: Actually, on the entire ocean bed, you can consider there is some degree of contamination. Sometimes it may not be contamination because it is the nature of sea bed that it does accumulate a lot of heavy metals. Sometimes it is from the erosion of the rocks, base rock, construction itself, and sometimes it is due to the sedimentation of effluent that is transported into the harbour. And we have a regular monitoring exercise to show that in Victoria Harbour and other parts of Hong Kong water bodies, the levels of contamination are very comparable. With Victoria Harbour itself, the entire Victoria Harbour may be slightly higher because of the activities of humans.

Reporter: What about the Tamar site area?

Dr Liao: Very similar. It is similar to all the other sites that we have monitored.

Reporter: Has anything been done for that?

Dr Liao: We don't need to touch it if it is a sediment. We let it stay.

Reporter: (State Environmental Protection Administration expressed its concern on the issue?)

Dr Liao: The State Environmental Protection Administration has actually, after verification, confirmed that they have never made any comment on the contamination related to the Tamar site. And it states very firmly that this is something that they have not commented on and will not comment on because this it something for the special administrative region to carry out for itself.

Reporter: Do you think that Legislative Council may not approve the Tamar project....?

Dr Liao: It is for Legislative Council to decide.

 (Please also refer to the Chinese portion)

Ends/Wednesday, June 14, 2006