Hong Kong’s largest eco-tour ‘Chinachem Walkathon 2015’ was held today at the Plover Cove Reservoir in Tai Mei Tuk, Tai Po. All funds raised, without deducting costs, will go towards the creation of Hong Kong’s first School Electricity Benchmarking Development & Research Tool to help schools better understand their electricity consumption and promote energy conservation and emission reduction in the education sector.
As part of its commitment to ‘Green for All’, Chinachem Group has been actively promoting conservation with its annual‘Chinachem Walkathon’ to offer an inclusive opportunity for all people to take delight in nature together. Since 2011, the event attracted approximately 17,000 participants, who enjoyed the opportunity to learn about Hong Kong’s history and natural heritage, including knowledge about ecology, geology and culture.
This year’s walkathon also serves to mark Plover Cove Reservoir’s 55th anniversary. The Plover Cove Reservoir was built in the 1960s during a period of intense water shortage. It was the world’s first reservoir built in the sea, and also the second largest reservoir in Hong Kong. The Reservoir’s dam spans approximately two kilometres, making it the longest dam in the city. At the time of its construction, it was a ground-breaking idea to build two dams linking islands together for water storage. Participants of Chinachem Walkathon 2015 were able to hear about these interesting stories while admiring natural sceneries renowned internationally for their beauty.
Dr. Kung Yan-sum, Executive Director and Chairman of Group Executive Committee of Chinachem Group, kicked off the event with officiating guests. “We are all born with unique talents and should be given the opportunity to unleash them in different endeavours. It is in this spirit that Chinachem Group is fulfilling our corporate social responsibility by enabling people of different abilities to enjoy our natural environment together. As we are also committed to supporting environmental education, all donations from this year’s event will go towards the creation of Hong Kong’s first School Electricity Benchmarking Development & Research Tool to help students understand the importance of conservation,” said Dr. Kung.
The aim of the Electricity Benchmarking Development & Research Tool, sponsored by Chinachem Walkathon, is to offer an online platform for local schools to better understand their electricity consumption and suggest ways to conserve energy and reduce emission. There will be 30 secondary schools invited in the first phase (the ultimate target is 100 schools) to undergo training by World Green Organization (WGO) and Energy and Environmental Policy Research Unit of City University of Hong Kong (EEPRU) on methods of collecting campus electricity consumption data, e.g. the school’s electricity consumption level, the number of lighting fixtures, weekly hours of air-conditioning, etc. After assessing the collected data, all schools will be graded from A to E, with A being the most energy efficient. Lastly, the data will be compiled for benchmarking by other schools. To promote energy conservation among the younger generation, WGO will conduct various activities for the assessed schools, such as workshops for students to learn about climate change and the energy usage by different lighting equipment. Non-participating schools can also access the online School Electricity Benchmarking Development & Research Tool for information on energy usage by different schools and learn about ways to conserve energy.
Chinachem Group also teamed up with KeenAble Creation for the first time to invite talented artists living with autism and other mental challenges to create 21 paintings on exhibit along the world’s longest dam during ‘Chinachem Walkathon 2015’. The artists were also on hand to demonstrate speed portrait painting for participants. At The Djembe Workshop, adults and kids learned how to upcycle tin food cans into Africa-inspired handicrafts and enjoyed African drum performances.
Dr. Kung officiated the kick-off ceremony with Dr. Ko Wing-man, Secretary for Food and Health; Mr. Wong Chung-leung, Deputy Director of Water Supplies; Mr. Patrick Lai, Assistant Director of Agriculture, Fisheries and Conservation Department;Dr. William Yu, Chief Executive Officer of World Green Organisation. Other guests include Dr. Edward Leong Che-hung;Mr. Harry Lai, Assistant Director/Electricity and Energy Efficiency, The Electrical and Mechanical Services Department (EMSD); Professor Ian Holliday, Vice-President and Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Teaching and Learning), Hong Kong University;Ms Ada Leung, Associate Vice-President (Academic and Research), Hang Seng Management College; and more.