Editorial : Proper ancillary measures for waste disposal charging plan are needed

【明報專訊】HAVING procrastinated over the proposal to levy a charge on municipal solid waste for 14 years, the government has finally announced that it will submit a draft bill to the Legislative Council this month in the hope that the proposal will be implemented by 2020 at the earliest. The government has been talking about a waste disposal charge and "polluter pays principle" for years, but it has been empty talk and a classic case of deliberation without decision. Although the government has finally introduced a draft bill officially, it does not seem that the government is fully prepared. It is unclear what ancillary measures there will be to support waste reduction at source, and one doubts how the law will be implemented after the waste disposal charge scheme is implemented. Introducing a waste levy scheme has a political cost. What political parties and politicians care about most is how many votes they get. There are, therefore, a lot of uncertainties concerning whether the bill will be passed. Even government officials are not optimistic. There is actually no guarantee that the policy will be implemented in 2020, and one doubts that the government is determined to introduce the waste disposal charge scheme.