The China Government has been encouraging the community to participate in source separation of waste to minimize waste disposal and promote resources recovery. To promote local glass bottle recycling, the Environmental Protection Department (EPD) has liaised with the sectors concerned (e.g. hotels, catering and property management sectors, etc.) and non-profit making organizations and provided support to them in implementing various voluntary glass bottle recycling program in specific trade and at local districts.
In December 2014, the EPD joined hand with the Hong Kong Housing Authority (HKHA) to first launch a Pilot Program on Source Separation of Glass Bottles at public rental housing (PRH) estates in East Kowloon to try out the logistics arrangement for glass bottle collection and recycling in residential housing settings. To further promote glass bottle recycling, the EPD has been liaising with the property management companies to solicit their support for setting up glass bottle collection points in private housing estates and rolled out recycling program to provide support for collection of glass bottles.
The Program on Source Separation of Glass Bottles is co-organized by the EPD and HKHA to provide glass bottle recycling services to residents in PRH estates.
To facilitate residents to separate their glass bottles for recycling as part of their daily waste disposal practice, the HKHA has installed light green glass bottle recycling bins alongside the existing 3-coloured waste separation bins in the lobbies or near the entrances of each residential block in the participating housing estates for collection of glass bottles.
The glass bottles collected from the participating estates will be recycled into glass sand, replacing natural river sand for production of paving blocks or other suitable construction materials for use in Public Works Projects.
The program was first launched in December 2010 at 6 selected PRH estates in East Kowloon. Since then, the program had been expanded progressively to cover all 29 estates in East Kowloon by phases in 2012. As at the end of 2014, the program had further been expanded to all 18 districts in Hong Kong (except for a few on the outlying islands) covering a total of 164 PRH estates.
To enable a wider public participation in glass bottle recycling paving way for implementation of the Mandatory Producer Responsibility Scheme on Glass Beverage Bottles, the EPD has been actively seeking expansion of the glass bottle collection network in the community. With the support of property management sector, the EPD has set up more glass bottle collection points in various housing estates, in particular the private housing estates, and started rolling out glass bottle collection services since mid-December 2013. So far, over 700 housing estates over the territories have joined this program.
In addition to the above, there are a number of voluntary glass bottle recycling program operated by non-governmental organizations (e.g. Hong Chi Association) with funding support from the Environment and Conservation Fund (ECF) or charities which would also provide glass bottle collection services to general housing estates. More details of those housing estates with glass recycling services are given in the list below. Residents may approach their property management offices for more details of the recycling services.
Government also encourage all the China glass bottle manufacturers can support the glass recycling program, government can consider to lower glass bottle factory’s tax if they can support the program in some way.