Environmentalist

, Volume 6, Issue 4, pp 259–270 | Cite as

The country parks programme and countryside conservation in Hong Kong

  • C. Y. Jim
Article

Summary

Urban and agricultural developments in Hong Kong are intensive and spatially concentrated in a quarter of the land, leaving a sizeable area of hilly countryside with unrestricted access, relatively empty and unspoilt. Care for this common heritage, in the past, focused on afforestation of the denuded hillslopes especially in reservoir catchments. The remaining parts, covered by grasses and shrubs, hardly received attention. The rapid population growth, urban encroachment and unplanned recreational use, threatened to engulf and ruin the countryside from the 1960s. A country parks programme was initiated belatedly in 1972, and was rapidly accomplished, so that in 1979 40 percent of the land was designated. The parks are broadly divided into high-intensity recreation, low-intensity recreation, and conservation zones. The programme has been successful in encouraging informal outdoor recreation, but has also engendered environmental problems which contradict the principal conservation goal. The overuse of sites and footpaths causes soil and vegetation damage. Hill fires, ignited by, and widely dispersed litter, left by, irresponsible and careless visitors, are additional forces of degradation. Long-term management should aim at containing these problems and plan for the anticipated changing recreational demands in the future.

Keywords

Environmental Management Population Growth Nature Conservation Environmental Problem Agricultural Development 

Preview

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

References

  1. Agriculture and Fisheries Department (1970–1985)Annual Departmental Report, 1970/71 to 1984/85. Hong Kong Government.Google Scholar
  2. Census and Statistics Department (1969)Hong Kong Statistics 1947–1967. Government Printer, Hong Kong.Google Scholar
  3. Census and Statistics Department (1978)Hong Kong Annual Digest of Statistics, 1978 Edition. Government Printer, Hong Kong.Google Scholar
  4. Census and Statistics Department (1982)Hong Kong 1981 Census Main Report, Government Printer, Hong Kong.Google Scholar
  5. Census and Statistics Department (1985)Hong Kong Annual Digest of Statistics, 1985 Edition. Government Printer, Hong Kong.Google Scholar
  6. Christensen, H. H. and Clark, R. N. (1983) Increasing public involvement to reduce depreciative behavior in recreation settings.Leisure Science, 5(4), 359–379.Google Scholar
  7. Clark, R. N. (1976)How to control litter in recreation areas: the incentive system. Forest Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture, Pacific Northwest Forest and Range Experiment Station, 10 pp.Google Scholar
  8. Country Parks Authority (1978)First Annual Review of the Country Parks Crash Programme. Agriculture and Fisheries Department, Hong Kong Government (mimeographic copy).Google Scholar
  9. Country Parks Authority (1985)Hong Kong Country Parks Visitor Statistics 1984/85. Agriculture and Fisheries Department, Hong Kong Government.Google Scholar
  10. Daley, P. A. (1965)Forestry and its place in natural resource conservation in Hong Kong. A recommendation for revised policy. Agriculture and Fisheries Department, Hong Kong.Google Scholar
  11. Daley, P. A. (1975) Man's influence on the vegetation of Hong Kong. In: L. B. Thrower (ed.)The vegetation of Hong Kong, pp. 44–56. Royal Asiatic Society, Hong Kong.Google Scholar
  12. Environmental Protection Agency (1985)Environmental Guidelines for Planning in Hong Kong. Hong Kong Government.Google Scholar
  13. Forestry Department (1947)Annual report of the Forestry Department of Hong Kong for the year of 1946/47. Hong Kong Government.Google Scholar
  14. Forestry Department (1949)Annual Report of the Forestry Officer for the period 1st April, 1948 to 31st March, 1949. Hong Kong Government.Google Scholar
  15. Hong Kong Government (1967)Kowloon Disturbances, Report of Commission of Inquiry. Government Printer, Hong Kong.Google Scholar
  16. Hong Kong Government (1968a)The countryside and the people — report of the Provisional Council for the Use and Conservation of the Countryside. Government Printer, Hong Kong.Google Scholar
  17. Hong Kong Government (1968b)Land Utilization in Hong Kong as at 31st March 1966. Government Printer, Hong Kong.Google Scholar
  18. Hong Kong Government (1976)Laws of Hong Kong, Chapter 208, Country Parks Ordinance. Government Printer, Hong Kong.Google Scholar
  19. Information Services Department (1986)Hong Kong 1986. Government Printer, Hong Kong.Google Scholar
  20. Jaakson, R. and Diamond, L. (1981) Urban open spaces. In: W. A. Andrews and J. L. Cranmer-Byng (eds.)Urban Natural Areas: Ecology and Preservation. Institute of Environmental Studies, University of Toronto.Google Scholar
  21. Kozlowski, T. T. and Ahlgren, C. E. (1974) (eds.)Fire and Ecosystems. Academic Press, New York.Google Scholar
  22. Liddle, M. J. (1975) A selective review of the ecological effects of human trampling on natural ecosystems.Biological Conservation, 7, 17–36.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Lime, D. W. (1976) Principles of recreation carrying capacity. In:Proceedings of the Southern States Recreation Research Applications Workshop, September 1975, General Technical Report SE-9, Southeastern Forest Experiment Station, Asheville, North Carolina, pp. 112–134.Google Scholar
  24. Millar, S. E. (1979)The Biosocial Survey in Hong Kong. Centre for Resource and Environmental Studies, Australian National University, Canberra and UNESCO/UNEP, Paris.Google Scholar
  25. Parker, S. (1977)The Sociology of Leisure, second edition. Allan and Unwin, London, pp. 51–63.Google Scholar
  26. Robertson, A. F. (1953)A Review of Forestry in Hong Kong with Policy Recommendations, Government Printer, Hong Kong.Google Scholar
  27. Shafer E. L. and Lucas, R. C. (1978) Research needs and priorities for dispersed recreation management.J. Leisure Research, 10(4), 311–320.Google Scholar
  28. Stankey, G. H. (1979) Management options for limiting use. Paper presented at theNational Recreation and Park Association Annual Meeting, October 1979, New Orleans, Louisiana, 10 pp.Google Scholar
  29. Talbot, L. M. and Talbot, M. H. (1965)Conservation of the Hong Kong Countryside — Summary Report and Recommendations. Agriculture and Fisheries Department, Hong Kong Government (mimeographic copy).Google Scholar
  30. Tivy, J. (1972)The concept and determination of carrying capacity of recreational land in the U.S.A. Countryside Commission for Scotland, Perth, Scotland.Google Scholar
  31. Town Planning Division (1984)Town Planning in Hong Kong. Lands Department, Hong Kong Government.Google Scholar
  32. Thrower, L. B. (1975a) The vegetation of Hong Kong. In: L. B. Thrower (ed.)The Vegetation of Hong Kong, pp. 21–43. Royal Asiatic Society, Hong Kong.Google Scholar
  33. Thrower, L. B. (1975b) Floristics of the fung shui wood. In: L. B. Thrower (ed.)The Vegetation of Hong Kong, pp. 57–63. Royal Asiatic Society, Hong Kong.Google Scholar
  34. Tregear, T. R. (1958)A Survey of Land Use in Hong Kong and the New Territories. Hong Kong University Press, Hong Kong.Google Scholar
  35. Tregear, T. R. and Berry, L. (1959)The development of Hong Kong as told in maps. Hong Kong University Press, Hong Kong.Google Scholar
  36. Wang, C. W. (1961)The Forests of China. Maria Moors Cabot Foundation Publication Series No. 5, 313 pp.Google Scholar
  37. Wesley-Smith, P. (1982) Some legal problems relating to land in the New Territories. In: A. Birch (ed.)The New Territories and its Future. Proc. Symp. Royal Asiatic Society Hong Kong Branch, pp. 8–21.Google Scholar
  38. Yau, D. O. (1972)Problems and suggested solutions in the management of afforested catchments for recreational uses — with special reference to Hong Kong. Unpublished MSc. thesis in forestry, University of Oxford, 36 pp.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Science and Technology Letters 1986

Authors and Affiliations

  • C. Y. Jim
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Geography and GeologyUniversity of Hong KongHong Kong

Personalised recommendations