Here's a letter I sent the South China Morning Post; an edited version appeared today.
Why does "sustainable development" now seem a readily bandied about, abused term - deployed for developments that have little regard for our environment, or for people today, or for future generations?
My overriding impression is: THERE IS NO PLAN! Instead, a mishmash of various projects that are broadly based on the strategy to have development on north Lantau.
Good day to you. It gives me great pleasure to visit this site, to give a preliminary report on the work of the Lantau Concreting Committee - which, you must understand, is not connected with or to be confused with the Lantau Development Task Force. For while the LCC is similar in considering what should be done with Hong Kong's largest island, Lantau, and some of our goals are similar, we in the LCC are different. While the Lantau Development Task Force aims for "sustainable development", we are proud to stand up and say we promote unsustainable development.
Yes, no wishy-washy pandering to green groups or the general public, no shilly-shallying or beating about the bush for us: we see great opportunities for short-term gain on Lantau, and we're dedicated to making the most of them. Carpe Diem Screwem - Seize the Day and the Hell with the Consequences - is our motto.
Now, you may ask what do we know about Lantau - are we familiar with the island? Well, of course we know Lantau - we often jet in and out of Hong Kong airport, and glance at the island through the plane and airport windows.
In fact, one of our committee members even visited southern Lantau recently, and discovered what many of us had long suspected: this island is shockingly undeveloped! Yes, it's hard to believe in this day and age that the Pearl River delta region still boasts a sizeable island with monasteries and mountains, ravines with waterfalls, tranquil coves, and peaceful villages. We'll soon change that.
Lately we've had a few meetings in our secret lair, examining a map I picked up from the Hong Kong Tourism Board, and discussing how to carve up Lantau. And we've come up with a fine mix of projects.
The Kings of Concrete and wannabe kings are queuing up with plans to build on or over some lovely places; and the government seems split between conservation, and dreaming up Big Silly Projects.