Pro-Beijing lawmaker Ann Chiang has proposed giving lawmakers only half a glass of water during meetings in order to conserve natural resources.

“Lawmakers are only allowed to drink half a glass of water!” said an image posted to Chiang’s Facebook page, above a photo of her pointing sternly at the camera.

勿浪費食水,由議員做起  大家都講要珍惜食水,但是有啲議員竟然是大嘥鬼! 立法會每次為議員添滿整杯水,好多時候都沒飲完,很浪費。阿Ann特意去信立法會行管會,建議每次限添水半杯,行管會亦從善如流, 回覆稱會提醒管事添水時的份量, 以免浪費!

Posted by 蔣麗芸議員 on Sunday, 11 June 2017

On Monday, Chiang wrote on social media criticising some lawmakers for not finishing the entire glass of water during meetings.

“Ann took the initiative to write to the Legislative Council Commission to propose filling the glasses by half. The commission replied that it will tell its staffers to be mindful of the amount of water given to lawmakers in order to minimise waste,” Chiang said.

Water glasses during LegCo meetings. File Photo: LegCo, via Flickr.

Not everyone was impressed by Chiang’s suggestion, however. Some questioned why she focused on lawmakers’ drinking water, rather than dealing with the large amount of unused Dongjiang water that Hong Kong buys from China at a high cost every year.

Last month, pro-democracy lawmakers tabled a motion to increase the amount of locally sourced water and change how Dongjiang water is purchased – by switching from a fixed amount to purchasing it by volume. The motion was vetoed as the establishment majority – including Chiang – voted against it.

Others offered Chiang different ideas for conserving water resources. One commenter wrote: “Everyone should bring their own water bottle and take the amount of water they need. They don’t need to be served by legislative staff.”

Lawmakers visited facilities along the Dongjiang River. File Photo: LegCo, via Flickr.

Another said: “I think her starting point is good, but a better suggestion is for lawmakers to bring their own cup or water bottle to meetings, so that no use of extra water will be needed to clean the glasses.”

See also: Cats catch mice, says Hong Kong lawmaker following ‘extensive research’

Chiang previously attracted public attention after proposing that stray cats could be enlisted to solve the city’s rodent problem. Last Friday, she said she learnt that cats are natural enemies of rats after extensive research.


Ellie Ng

Ellie Ng has written for Foreign Policy, the Daily Telegraph, Global Voices Online and others.