Hong Kong - Air Pollution Control Ordinance

    Hong Kong

    Hong Kong - Air Pollution Control Ordinance

    The Air Pollution Control Ordinance (Cap 311) (‘APCO’) establishes a framework for air quality objectives and anti-pollution requirements. It enables the creation of subsidiary regulations to deal with specific air pollution problems and empowers the Environmental Protection Department (‘EPD’) to impose a licencing control on major stationary emission sources and issue legal notices to air pollution sources to demand remedial actions.  

    Last Updated: July 22, 2019


  • Requirements

    The APCO establishes four regulatory regimes including:  

    • Air Quality Objectives that set the target maximum amounts for levels of emissions from sulphur dioxide, respirable suspended particulates, fine suspended particulates, Ozone, nitrogen dioxide, carbon monoxide and lead; 
    • emissions of air pollution from pollution processers must be licenced under the APCO from the EPD; 
    • there is a general power under the APCO to issue air pollution abatement notices requiring the emissions of air polluting processes to be ceased or reduced, for air pollution due to improper design the APCO empowers the EPD to require the owner of the premises to take specified steps to rectify the deficiencies; and 
    • APCO introduces provisions on asbestos control, which is the only form of indoor air pollution covered, control on power plant emissions, control on vehicle emissions, control on marine emissions and control of non-road mobile machinery emissions. 

    Any person or company who commits an offence under the Ordinance shall be liable to prosecution. In addition, under section 47A of the APCO, the company’s director, manager, secretary or other person concerned in the management is also personally liable to prosecution for the offence committed by that company if the offence is committed owing to his consent or connivance, or neglect or omission. The maximum fines for convictions under the APCO range from HKD 100,000 (approx. € 11,390) to HKD 500,000 (approx. € 56,960) and six to twelve months imprisonment.  

    The EPD has issued guidance on the APCO. In addition, the APCO allows the government to issues technical memoranda providing principles, guidelines, standards and limits on air pollution. 

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