Located on the south eastern shore of the New Territories, Clearwater Bay has been a longstanding favorite among expats and locals alike to live and play along the peninsula. A short commute from the hectic city with stunning beach views and beautiful hiking trails, the bay is frequent attraction all year long.
“It is an idyllic place to live, especially for families,” recalls longtime Clearwater Bay resident, Laura Tyson. “While our government beach has never been cleaned or cared for, six years ago, our biggest worry was what the dogs had left behind. Now there are more needles and medical waste than ever, and it’s easier for our children to collect bottle tops than shells.”
Equally horrified and determined to evoke change among the community, Laura, along with neighbor and friend, Zoe Stevenson, decided come up with a solution to inspire change. The Green 52 Challenge, which launched at the beginning of the year, is an initiative aimed at encouraging people to make lasting changes to their everyday lives that will, in turn, reduce their impact on the environment. Each week throughout 2018, one challenge will be posted for those participating to achieve. Offering tips, tricks and eco hacks to be more environmentally-friendly, the objective is to live and lead a greener lifestyle.
“We’ve been making a few changes to our own lifestyles in recent years and knew we wanted to do something to help share simple ways everyone can make a difference,” says Zoe. Their simple and straightforward site reads as an easy guidebook instead of inundating readers with a deluge of facts and frills. “We don’t want to preach or make people feel guilty or overwhelmed,” adds Zoe. “We want to give practical tips and ideas or change a few habits.” With a goal to spread the message as far and wide as possible via social media, colleagues, friends and family, local followers and across the globe have been piping up and sharing tips on the official The Green 52 Facebook page.
Week One challenged you to to do away with plastic bags. That means, refusing to bag your groceries in plastic bags provided at the local grocery store, walking out of the bakery with your favorite croissant in hand as opposed to letting the cashier stow it in a small bag for you, or asking for a cardboard box in lieu of plastic at the checkout counter. Better yet, by keeping a pocked-sized reusable bag (or several) handy in your handbag, office, or car, it’s less likely you’ll be unprepared if your situation calls for a bag. Their Facebook page goes one step further and provides additional tips like their favorite reusable produce bags that Laura and Zoe likes to shop with (which happens to be these fabulous sturdy mesh bags made from recycled plastic bottles from local small shop, I Love HK Green) or if you can’t make it to the market, doing all your grocery shopping via Eat Fresh, which delivers local, organic produce to your door with zero packaging.
These manageable tips will not only curb Hong Kong’s growing waste predicament, but also reduce our carbon footprint. Week Two’s challenge is up and invites people to shop local. If you’re a foodie, they’ve offered a pretty good tip on their Instagram about the best place to get noodles! Go check it!
Images via Pexels, Freepik, Hong Kong Free Press and The Green 52 Challenge.