X

熱門

    劇情

    STORY
    19/05/2017

    Have you ever considered the wastes we throw out each day are valuable resources? Those could be recycled after proper sorting. But the process involves salaries and transportation costs; it’s difficult to promote recycling without a policy framework. Financial incentives are essential in proper waste sorting.
    Taiwan has long implemented waste charging and mandatory waste sorting. In Taipei and New Taipei City, residents are required to buy designated garbage bags for waste disposals. Recyclables are sorted before handing over to the cleaning teams. Citizens try to save money on garbage bags by waste reduction and sorting. The schemes have been proven effective; recycling rate is on the rise year after year. Large apartment complexes encourage residents to finely sort their recyclables to be sold at higher prices, and to lower the waste handling cost. New Taipei City has a rewards scheme for residents to accumulate points with their recyclables, in exchange for designated garbage bags and cleaning products, enabling “trash to turn gold”.
    Germany has introduced a Producer Responsibility Scheme as early as 1991 to offset the recycling cost. Manufacturers have to pay for the recycling costs before their products are launched. They must hire competent companies to recycle the packaging waste. Plastic beverage bottles are recycled through the deposit scheme, a plastic bottle can be refunded for around HK$2, that’s why over 90% plastic bottles in Germany are recycled.
    Making recycling worthwhile is the first step to help reinforce recycling habits among citizens.

    Producer
    YU Chi-ling


    集數

    EPISODES
    • Journey On

      Journey On

      The journey reaches its destination at last, after treading through several green nation states and understanding countless green technology. Back to where it all began, maybe we should ask ourselves, what is ‘waste’ after all?

      Sweden, a nation state at the forefront of environmental protection, has set its target to become a fossil-fuel-free nation by 2050. Malmö, the nation’s third largest city, is transformed from an industrial-based city to one that combines green consciousness with technology, made possible by the implementation of a green strategy. Stockholm, the nation’s capital, is the first European Green Capital. These outstanding achievements are not so much engineered by green organizations or business, but each and every one in the nation.

      Since its inception in 1967, the Swedish Environmental Protection Agency has been debating, researching and exploring for a few decades and the nation has developed a comprehensive policy on waste management. Today, only not more than 1% of domestic waste of the whole nation ends up in landfill. The remarkable achievement of the Swedes is the result of strict implementation of guidelines on waste hierarchy. Yet, the environmental protection sector thinks that there is room for improvement still. Göran, who works in an incineration company, opines that although Sweden’s waste-to-energy performance is first-class, his vision for the nation is that there will not be any waste for incineration.

      Environmental protection, as an industry, is not a novelty. However, is it always profit which drives the sustainable operation of the green sector? Maybe Kim, the person-in-charge of a material recycling organization, can give us another answer. He firmly believes that the practice of putting ecology as an important factor in business is an education in itself. It enables the next generation to understand that one cannot take more than one can give. We always think that sustainability and economic development is mutually exclusive. Through the implementation of different measures, from using bees as ecological indicators to the soon-to-be-completed nature path, Airport Director Peter Weinhandl and Environmental Manager Maria Bengtsson of Malmö Airport try to resolve the contradictory nature of ecology and economics. They are very proud of their work.

      Tracing the green footsteps of Sweden for the past 50 years, it is not difficult to discover that sustainability is not purely an ecological issue. It is also a way of life rooted in culture. If it is the people of Sweden who made the Green Nation possible, it is indeed their conception of conservation, nature and life itself in the more minute sense.

      The story of a sunken ship in Northern Europe has a strange resonance with the oriental sensibility of ‘everything is useful, however useless it might seem’. With a failed maiden voyage, Vasa has been hidden deep in the sea for three hundred years. Yet, she is given a new life through its failed history. On the Midsummer’s Day, after saying goodbye to the flora and fauna, we cross the forest which belongs to everyone. Allmansrätten – the right to enjoy nature – is written in the Swedish constitution. It enables every civilian to access even private forest, to ski, walk, fish and pick fruits, and to enjoy nature. Chatting with a young Swede. What effect does the green education has on the new generation of Swedes? How does it affect their perception of the future and imagination?

      Everything has its own course. We are all passer-bys of time and space. Waste, from being useless to become useful, undergoes a never-ending cycle of journey. In this sense, what can we take with us and leave behind during our own course of life? In the final destination, we visit a small island near Gothenburg and meet a biologist. Susanne Wiigh-Mäsak is the founder of Promessa who promotes the self-researched Eco-burial actively. With advanced freeze-drying technology, coffin with human remains would be turned into powder, which is transformed into harmless nutrients for the soil. It is ‘dust to dust’ truly indeed. Though this ideal is yet to be realized, the scientist believes that this is the most sincere remuneration human beings can give to mother nature as its steward, complying with its course.

      Journeys start from the here and now. Stones of other mountains might seem far away. Yet, be it the cosmic world or our own insignificant conception, any new journey begins with the transformation of the mind in order to become one with nature. May we walk on for this city and this world?

      14/07/2017
    • Building Green (2)

      Building Green (2)

      Green building isn’t an exclusive advantage of new buildings. Through retrofitting, old buildings could improve their energy efficiency to reduce carbon emissions. Research has shown that British buildings have an average lifespan of 132 years. These old buildings with poor energy efficiency fall behind today’s standards in terms of structure and equipment. The Greater London Authority launched RE:FIT to retrofit public sector buildings, hoping to help London to achieve its target to cut carbon emissions by 60% by 2025. Around 10% of London’s carbon emissions come from council housing. To make homes more energy-efficient, GLA began large scale retrofitting works (RE:NEW) including the replacement of heating systems, installations of double glazed windows and better insulated external walls. Over 110,000 units were retrofitted. The project helps to reduce carbon emissions as well as bringing warmer homes to residents.
      To encourage the improvement of energy efficiency in public sector buildings, the Greater London Authority has a framework of consultants providing tailored solutions to different public sector organisations, help them get energy efficiency retrofit projects successfully implemented and offer guaranteed cost savings, the RE:FIT programme successfully reduces public sector’s carbon emissions. Located in southwestern London Borough of Richmond, the Royal Botanic Gardens of Kew is a UNESCO world heritage site. The site houses over 200 buildings, 40 listed buildings and over 20 greenhouses. The around-the-clock heating in the greenhouses is energy-consuming. Energy experts provide a simple energy-saving plan for the gardens, hoping to improve the energy efficiency of the seed bank especially.
      Southwest England’s Bristol has the lowest per capita carbon emission of the largest cities in the UK; it was the winner of the European Green Capital in 2015. Bristolians care about environmental campaigns, and some community groups have taken the initiative to provide energy-saving plans for homes, by using a mobile phone and thermal imaging technology to detect heat loss in old buildings, so that residents could find out the problems at their homes and what measures must be taken.

      07/07/2017
    • Building Green (1)

      Building Green (1)

      Hong Kong is a highly densely-populated city characterized by its packed screen-like high rises. Not to mention the effects of solar radiation, multiple reflections and absorptions of sunlight between the buildings and the ground; the countless air-conditioners also contribute to the greenhouse effect, raising urban temperatures. Some 90% of electricity consumption in Hong Kong is consumed in buildings, the corresponding electricity generated accounting for over 60% of carbon emissions. Hence by promoting energy-efficient architecture could save on energy, reduce carbon dioxide emissions, and slow down global warming effectively.
      Green Building is a practice which seeks to reduce the environmental impact of buildings. Different regions have their green building certification systems based on local weather and environments, such as Hong Kong’s BEAM Plus and Singapore’s Green Mark schemes.
      World-famous garden city Singapore has launched many green initiatives over the years. The government rolled out the Green Mark Scheme in 2005 to drive the constructions industry through legislations and incentives. Some 30% of Singapore’s building has been Green Mark certified and the government aims for 80% of all buildings in the city-state to be certified by 2030.
      China might get a late start in green building, but it’s been playing catch-up in recent years. An indoor health index has been added to the green building rating criteria in recent years. An office in Shanghai not only has zero energy consumption, its designs and the furniture materials were selected based on the well-being of the staff. Occupant well-being parameters are the new global trend in green building.

      30/06/2017
    • A Future Powered by Renewable Energy (2)

      A Future Powered by Renewable Energy (2)

      Denmark, the Land of Fairy Tales is also a Nation of Wind Turbines.
      In 2012, the Danish Government set a carbon reduction target that all electricity will be generated using renewable sources by 2035. The country has over 5000 wind turbines powering 40% of Denmark’s electricity consumption at present.
      Renewable energy might be infinite, but the downside is the fluctuations of supply. Hence Denmark forms an inter-connected energy grid with neighboring Norway, Sweden and Germany etc. to ensure a stable supply of renewable energy. Domestic heat pump is one of the solutions to use up surplus renewable energy efficiently. With the functions of a thermostat and a thermal store, the heat pump converts electricity into heat for heating and hot water at homes.
      Besides developing wind power technology in full force, some companies in Denmark are developing new waste-to-energy technologies aiming to raise the stability and reliability of renewable energy. The new waste treatment technology REnescience can process unsorted waste. Biodegradable materials are liquefied through enzymatic action, methane (the main component of natural gas) is then extracted for electrical generation.
      To popularize renewable energy, Denmark has set up the world’s largest smart grid test site on Bornholm Island, a small island east of Denmark’s main island.
      Smart grid is a network that processes electricity consumption data. Through the smart meters installed at homes to record the individual household’s electricity consumption and habits, the data is sent to a central network. Pricing is set after analyses of real-time supply-demand ratio. Customers could opt for flexible consumption modes and patterns based on the time-dependent pricing. It also helps the power company to set up competitive business strategies, and the government can grasp the households’ power demands more accurately without spending extra to lay new grids.
      Even the smart grid is still in its testing phase, and many issues require to be addressed. We’re now facing the pressing global warming issues, what could we do to reduce our carbon footprints, and what measure can be taken to slow down the rate of global warming? The popularization of renewable energy is one solution.

      23/06/2017
    • A Future Powered by Renewable Energy (1)

      A Future Powered by Renewable Energy (1)

      Fukushima’s nuclear disaster has devastated the coastal region and also raised alarms about the safety of nuclear power plants. In addition to global warming, we must step up efforts on developing renewable energy as an alternative to nuclear and fossil fuels.
      Japan began to develop renewable energy in the 80s, and their national interests sparked post 311 Fukushima. Renewable energy accounts for 12% of the energy used in Japan, one of the highest among Asian countries. Different cities in Japan have different policies to encourage the use of solar energy. Take Nagoya for example; it’s ranked 5th in Japan’s sunshine duration. In a densely-populated country without other natural resources, solar energy is the best option. The government has taken different measures to promote solar energy. In 2012, Japan rolled out a FIT (feed-in tariff) scheme. The government subsidizes power companies to purchase electricity generated from renewable resources with a fixed price. Citizens can set up domestic solar power systems for their use and can sell the surplus electricity to power companies. Domestic solar systems could also provide electricity during power outages due to earthquakes.
      On the other hand, Japan has also begun to set up large scale floating solar power plants in reservoirs. They’re currently building Japan’s largest floating solar power generator system in Chiba’s Yamakura Dam. The plant is roughly the size of 25 standard football pitches, and the electricity generated is enough to power 5000 households, which is equivalent to a public housing estate in Hong Kong’s electricity usage. Floating solar plants have several advantages, it’s a way to save land space, panels could reduce water evaporation and are cooled for better efficiency.
      Located on the other side of the sea, South Korea is the world’s leader in food waste recycling rate. The country has been pursuing waste-to-energy solutions. The waste-to-energy plant in the Sudokwon Landfill Site processes 500 tonnes of food waste water from Incheon, Seoul and Gyeonggi Province daily, converting food waste water into methane (a principle component of natural gas) by anaerobic digestion for electrical generation. The biogas collected from Sudokwon Landfill Site is also used to generate power for 180,000 families.
      Other than power generation from biogas and food waste promoted by Seoul Metropolitan Government, solar energy is another very popular clean energy resource. NGO Energy Peace Foundation runs a solar-generated power plant above Amsa Arisu, a water purification facility. Half of the proceeds of electricity sale will subsidize the poor, the other half into developing other solar projects.
      South Korea gets 30% of its electricity from nuclear power. Seoul Metropolitan Government rolled out the One Less Nuclear Power Plant energy initiative post 3-11 nuclear disaster, advocating the development of renewable resources. The initiative includes setting up energy self-sufficient districts and rewards schemes to encourage citizens to live an energy-efficient lifestyle. By reducing the current level of energy consumption in Seoul by as much as a typical nuclear unit can produce annually, to prove that Seoul doesn’t need an extra nuclear power plant.
      Energy conservation and development is a way to protect the environment and to create a renewable future.

      16/06/2017
    • The Inferno(2)

      The Inferno(2)

      If a city treats waste with incineration, its incineration plants could embody both functionality and artistic form.
      Vienna, capital of Austria, is one of the European cities which uses waste incineration. With a population close to 1.8 million, the city generates around 1,100,000 tonnes of waste annually. 30% of its waste is recycled and 70% is incinerated. Spittelau Waste Incineration Plant stands out among Vienna’s four incineration plants. When the plant was reconstructed in 1987 due to a fire, the late eco-artist Hundertwasser was commissioned to redesign the plant, converting it into a famous Viennese landmark. Hundertwasser blended technology, art and nature in harmony. Incineration plants usually have custom grids as facades but Hundertwasser broke this norm with many wavy lines. The mechanical elements are hidden under the artistic packaging, the sober appearance is gone. Sharp, colorful and quirky patches transformed the worn and greyish façade into an eye-catching structure. It was done in the hope to achieve public acceptance of urban incinerators. Modern incineration plants value energy recovery, by converting the waste heat generated from combustion into energy. Vienna has a district heating network of over 1200km in length, one of the biggest in Europe, supplies heating to 1/3 of the city’s households, which is around 340,000 households, and 1/3 of the heating comes from waste incineration.
      Local oppositions are common before the constructions of almost all incineration plants in Taiwan. The plants must convince locals with effective management and transparent self-regulation schemes, be committed to giving back to the community.The Bali Refuse Incineration Plant in New Taipei City has its own indoor heated swimming pool. The water is heated by the energy generated from the waste combustion, and is free of charge for the locals. This plant was designed by famous architect I.M. Pei’s team, its glass-walled structure has a translucent and clean presence. The plant processes 1/3 of New Taipei City’s trash and the electricity generated from waste combustion can be sold at around TWD 400 million per year.
      Japan’s Mashima Incineration Plant in Osaka has a similar exterior like Spittelau Plant in Vienna, for they’re both the works of Hundertwasser, characterized by colorful patches greenery. This plant began operations in 2001 and is very popular in Japan, attracting over 10,000 visitors per year. The plant’s management wishes to get rid of the negative impressions of incinerators so they invited Hundertwasser to design this “twin” plant. With a façade like something from a story tale, the educational tour complements its design. The incineration process is explained in an entertaining way, so that visitors will learn more about the waste issues. Mashima Incineration Plant processes 1/4 of Osaka City’s waste and is one of the top ten electricity generators among Japan’s incineration plants. The plant has made 1,160 million yen from electricity sale in 2014.
      To appreciate modern incineration plant’s architecture, the Naka Waste Incineration Plant in Hiroshima City designed by renowned Japanese architect Yoshio Taniguchi is a good example. The “Ecorium” is a walkway running through the middle of the building. The “Ecorium” is open to the public, just as the whole structure gives a “welcoming” presence. Walking along the “Ecorium” and you can see the giant silver facilities revealed behind the glass walls. It’s like being in a museum where you can take your time in your viewing. Naka Waste Incineration Plant is one of the infrastructures built in Hiroshima as an initiative for peace and creativity on the 50th anniversary of A-bombing. There’s a large lawn in front of the modern silver structure. Viewing from the waterfront, the incineration plant is like a large entrance, linking the sea and the land and stretches all the way to the urban centre. Half of Hiroshima’s waste is incinerated in this plant which has a daily capacity of 500 tonnes.
      We should tackle the waste issue with an open and transparent attitude. In addition to waste treatment, the modern incineration plants should also promote waste reduction at the source.

      09/06/2017
    • The Inferno(1)

      The Inferno(1)

      As Hong Kong’s three landfills are expected to hit capacity soon, the government plans to build a waste incinerator in Shek Kwu Chau to tackle the imminent problem. Incineration or landfill disposals are both end solutions in waste management. Incineration could significantly reduce but not completely eliminate solid waste, but there’re follow-up issues to be handled.

      In 1991, Taiwan launched the “one incinerator for one county” policy to solve the municipal solid waste problem. 36 incinerators were initially planned, only 26 were built and two of those never opened mainly due to public opposition, and the significant municipal waste reduction due to mandatory waste sorting and recycling. Proper waste management and sorting must be carried out in waste incineration. After the process, an incinerator ash of about 15% from the original mass would remain, the heavy metal bearing wastes and other toxic contents such as dioxins must be processed before disposing to landfills or reusing. Taiwan has seen a continuous decrease in waste and has achieved a recycling rate of over 50% after setting waste reduction as their goal. The waste management policy has shifted from "incineration as primary, supplemented by landfills" towards “recycling as primary, incineration as supplementary”. Taipei is planning to shut down an incineration plant.

      In Japan, the nation of waste incineration, over 70% of Japan’s waste is incinerated. Take Tokyo City’s 23 wards, the whole area covers about 600 square kilometers, which is over half of the whole of Hong Kong. Tokyo City has a dense population of over 9 million and 21 incineration plants in its 23 wards. The incinerators are built within the communities, practically “burning our own waste”. The short transfer minimizes secondary pollution, but there’re local oppositions of having incinerators built in the communities. Treating incinerator ash poses another problem, according to information provided by Japan’s Ministry of the Environment, the landfills in Japan will hit capacity in 20 years. Since there’s no land for landfill sites in Tokyo’s 23 wards, land is reclaimed in Tokyo Bay. Some plants use thermal melting technology, by melting ash into slag at a high temperature of 1200 degrees Celsius, to shrink the volume of ash, at 1/20 of original waste mass, to a further 1/40, with a purpose to ease pressure on landfills.

      We handle our wastes with landfilling and incineration, but we should really aim for waste reduction and “zero waste” in the long run.

      02/06/2017
    • Eat Wise, Waste Not

      Eat Wise, Waste Not

      Hong Kong generates 3,600 tonnes of food waste daily, making up 1/3 of the waste to be dumped in our landfills, yet we’ve zero policy on food waste recycling.
      South Korea is the world’s leader in food waste recycling, with over 90% food waste recycled.
      South Korean Government implemented a food waste levy in 1998. Landfilling of food waste was banned from 2005. In the early phase of the food waste charging scheme, citizens could buy designated food waste bags and those in housing complexes could split the food waste costs of the public food waste bins. To coincide with “pay food waste by weight” policy, South Korea launched the self-service electronic food waste machine (Radio Frequency Identification) in 2013. Using these advanced machines, citizens could find out their daily food waste generation. It’s easier for them to set a food waste reduction target. Some regions’ food waste volume was down by 30%. Other than household food waste, restaurants of all sizes must buy designated food waste garbage bags or hire food waste handling companies to handle their waste.
      To make waste reduction at source work, we must waste less food as well as create less food waste.
      France is the first country to ban food waste by law. In May 2015, the French Senate passed a law banning all big supermarkets from destroying edible unsold food. They must donate the food to charities or could face penalties including fines up to 3,750 Euros or imprisonment. Each French person wastes about 20-30 kilograms of food per year. The Government hopes to halve France’s food waste by 2025. In January 2016, French government introduced a new regulation. Medium to large sized restaurants are obliged to provide free doggy bags for diners to pack the leftovers. This isn’t a common practice in France, and the new regulation hopes to change the citizens’ habits, in a move to cut food waste and waste less food.

      26/05/2017
    • Recycling is Worthwhile

      Recycling is Worthwhile

      Have you ever considered the wastes we throw out each day are valuable resources? Those could be recycled after proper sorting. But the process involves salaries and transportation costs; it’s difficult to promote recycling without a policy framework. Financial incentives are essential in proper waste sorting.
      Taiwan has long implemented waste charging and mandatory waste sorting. In Taipei and New Taipei City, residents are required to buy designated garbage bags for waste disposals. Recyclables are sorted before handing over to the cleaning teams. Citizens try to save money on garbage bags by waste reduction and sorting. The schemes have been proven effective; recycling rate is on the rise year after year. Large apartment complexes encourage residents to finely sort their recyclables to be sold at higher prices, and to lower the waste handling cost. New Taipei City has a rewards scheme for residents to accumulate points with their recyclables, in exchange for designated garbage bags and cleaning products, enabling “trash to turn gold”.
      Germany has introduced a Producer Responsibility Scheme as early as 1991 to offset the recycling cost. Manufacturers have to pay for the recycling costs before their products are launched. They must hire competent companies to recycle the packaging waste. Plastic beverage bottles are recycled through the deposit scheme, a plastic bottle can be refunded for around HK$2, that’s why over 90% plastic bottles in Germany are recycled.
      Making recycling worthwhile is the first step to help reinforce recycling habits among citizens.

      Producer
      YU Chi-ling

      19/05/2017
    • Treasure Our Green City

      Treasure Our Green City

      We create plenty of waste and carbon emissions in our daily lives. The people of Hong Kong cannot turn a cold shoulder to the pressing issues of climate change and energy crisis.
      Hong Kong has around 40,000 garbage bins and waste disposal has become very convenient for us. Our daily per capita municipal solid waste (MSW) generation has been on the rise year after year. We must shift the focus from waste handling to waste management, hence waste charging must be adopted. Waste charging has been implemented in Taipei and South Korea for years, with an aim to educate the citizens about the costs of waste disposal, so that everyone will start by waste reduction at the source.
      Hong Kong generates 70,000 tonnes of electrical and electronic waste yearly. These contain toxic components which are harmful to the environment if not treated properly. After conducting a public consultation, the government has adopted the implementation of the Producer Responsibility Scheme (PRS) on Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment (WEEE). Manufacturers, importers, wholesalers, retailers and consumers must share the responsibility for the collection, recycling, treatment and disposal of these products. Environmental groups advocate that the PRS should be extended to plastic bottles, to address the 5 million plastic bottles being discarded in Hong Kong every day.
      The Organic Waste Treatment Facilities (OWTF) located in Siu Ho Wan is expected to be completed in 2017. The treatment plant has a daily capacity of 200 tonnes but Hong Kong generates 3,600 tonnes of food waste per day. Even with the construction of OWTF Phase 2, a large amount of food waste will be dumped in landfills, causing the stench. We should really tackle this with food waste reduction. As LegCo passed the “3 landfills expansions + 1 incinerator” plan, waste incineration will be revived in Hong Kong. This doesn’t solve the waste problem entirely, we must not contribute to the problem with excessive consumption.
      Global efforts are made to address the pressing carbon emissions and global warming issues. Many countries signed the Paris Agreement at the Climate Change Conference in December 2015, hoping to hold global warming to well below 2 degrees Celsius before the end of this century, and to “pursue efforts” to limit it to 1.5 degrees Celsius. How could Hong Kong help in order to reach this target? What are the challenges we face in the development of renewable energy? How could we incorporate green architecture and create eco-friendly environment in our densely-populated city?

      Producer: Annie Yau

      12/05/2017