Wednesday, September 19, 2007

ISA HK/China --- China Tree News (Saving Dying Trees in Beijing & IPM China 2007)

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Dear Station Members,

Attached are two sets of recent Tree News from China :

1. Research to save dying Mature Trees in Beijing

It was reported that following heavy urbanization in Beijing, the health & growth of Mature Trees in the City have been seriously threatened. According to statistic, in the year 2005 alone, around 10, 000 no. of Mature Trees in Beijing have died. In the year 2006, in the famous Tian An Man Square, over 200 no. of Mature Pines also died off.

In view of such deteriorating situation for the Mature Tree planting in Beijing, the Beijing Institute of Landscape has begun their research on the decline of Mature Trees. It is said that their research will focus on environmental science, plant physiology, plant aging biology & plant protection. It is reported that such research will fill the vacuum in the studies of Mature Trees in the capital city of China.

In reality, this will be an excellent opportunity to sell ISA to Beijing in the eyes of this Station. However, this would mean sending someone knowledgeable enough in arboriculture, language, diplomacy & culture to stay in contact with Beijing, preferable up there to drink & party with them whenever on call. Beijing has also a tradition of protectionism & anyone outside Beijing can be considered as a foreigner. We also need to be careful about the true intention behind this message, whether the event was really aiming for fund rising only to save a Dept. In China after 1949, any outside influence would be labelled ' foreign intervention' if not welcomed or desired, & our brothers & sisters would not tell us on the face. Once shut away & black listed, it may require extra effort at senior level in the Govt to break the ice. We just have to play it their way to be invited rather.

China the Old Dragon is certainly not as easy to enter as some may think without better understanding of this land of 1.3 billion, under a socialist Govt running an apparently capitalistic economy.

2. IPM China 2007

Once again, this national event hosted by seniorities in the Chinese Govt appears to be a suitable spot for this Station to participate for promoting ISA & arboriculture over there. This event is held close to HK, just 50 miles away to our west. Language does not appear to be a problem & there are lots of Chinese landscapers attending this gathering. The cost for a 9 sqm booth is only USD 625 for a period of 3 days & logistics are available conveniently for participants.

However, on further enquiring about the event, it does not appear to have a seminar session in this important national gathering !! The participants are there only to sell their products in their own booth for passing customers. No education session or discussion will be available. It will be everyone for himself in the event. This IPM show appears to adopt the traditional China Market Place style of heckling & bargaining, & not really meant for promoting education or research.

The Station Manager has also enquired what if a Tree Climbing Demonstration can be arranged by us? Would IPM China consider to promote it? The answer is a definite 'yes', but we have to bring in our own tree. We also have to remove the tree after the show immediately at our own cost. The place for the demonstration will need to be arranged at an additional cost to us ...

Therefore, at such an important greenery show at national level in China, no education or demonstration session is made available to the participants. We can only sit there to wait for passing customers to enquire about ISA & tree care, & they are likely to ask us for brochures & catalogues for their future pirating. Hardly any of them will understand English & they would be most interested in prices rather than knowledge. To a lot of them, it is money that makes the world go round ...

Would this be the kind of Trade Show that we are prepared to go in at present?

best regards,

Sammy Au
Station Manager

Monday, September 17, 2007

ISA HK/China --- HK Tree News (Green Power survey on Tree Care)

*** Our weekly Station Mail is for the information of Station Members only, but Station Mail has given up copyright & can be freely circulated. For administrative reasons, comments from outsiders are usually not entertained & may be circulated within our system locally & overseas. Please note Station Mail is sometimes given in Blog at , although images are usually not attached due to size. ***

Dear Station Members,

An environmental activist group called Green Power recently carried out a survey on the satisfaction level of Tree Care in HK & the report is given in the attachment & in the following link, in Chinese:

According to their survey of 200 people, 70% were unhappy about the current condition of Tree Care in HK & some were demanding for Tree Laws to be enacted to protect our trees. A lot of the responders also did not know which Govt Dept is responsible for which trees in various locations.

What is drawing attention to this Station is that the good Mr. YP Tsang, brother of our Chief Executive His Excellency Mr. Donald Tsang, was also quoted as a positive Tree Lover to support our Tree Care. Mr. YP Tsang was quoted in saying that he has fond memories of the Ficus Trees at where he used to live in Hollywood Road when he was young, & these trees have witnessed his childhood. This Station has identified the potential help of Mr. YP Tsang & will bear in mind to approach him when the opportunity has arisen. We need all help we can get to develop Proper Tree Care in HK indeed.

Research has shown that properly installed trees in a community can lower social resentment & pacify mind. Look at those Big Spreading Trees in Hawaii & those Mature Trees in Singapore. Don't they please even the visitors? Communities well planted with trees tend to have lower crime rate & speedier recovery for patients. Men & Trees have always been one system throughout ages & it may be against our hidden nature to disturb trees.

On the other hand, if trees are not selected, planted, maintained, inspected & assessed for risk properly, they are likely to become a liability rather than an asset. Just look at the number of tree failures in our territory every year as a fact. Many events are not Acts of God. Evidence could speak stronger than words.

The number of Arborists now in our territory is on the rise rapidly & consistently. By this moment, HK/China has 41 Certified Arborists (CA) already. We expect the number to double after the Oct exam next month. HK may eventually possess over 1,000 no. of CA with the popularity it is going & the feedback this Station is receiving. Collecting credential fits into the mentality of our society.

On the other hand, passing the CA exam does not mean a person will become instantly proficient in practicing arboriculture by international standard. There are many legal pitfalls in practising arboriculture & lawyers are like sharks hunting blood. Arborists must be fact-finding & truth-telling to sail safely. By earning the CA credential has only pushed open the entrance door into the world of Arboriculture & there are still many doors to open after becoming a CA. The learning will be life-long & any international Arborist will confirm that.

This Station will carry on developing arboriculture in the proper manner & try to bring in as many allies as possible in due course.

best regards,

Sammy Au
Station Manger

Nparks --- Green Thumbs 2007

Dear Station Members & Anybody,

Our good neighbour Singapore is generating heat for their Greenery event called Green Thumbs 2007 & publicity is emerging everywhere to boil participation. Singapore is taking full advantage of their magnificent trees for social event as well as for tourism, as their good trees would deserve every bit of our respect.

Please visit the pages below & the attachment of this e-mail for additional information of the event.

This Station would encourage anyone interested to feel the impact of Modern Arboriculture to visit Green Thumb 2007 in Singapore. If anyone going, would you be kind enough to send us a report for Station Mail upon return, so that we can also share your joy?

best regards,

Sammy Au
Station Manager

----- Original Message -----
From: Fook Chyi YONG
Cc: Teva RAJ ; Iqbal SANJIMAN
Sent: Monday, September 17, 2007 3:45 PM
Subject: Re: Nparks --- Green Thumbs 2007


Thanks for your support and encouragement in our event. You have indeed be a very good publicity platform for us in HK, China and Taiwan.

We are attaching a series of photos and news articles of the event for your perusal and if you feel suitable, to circulate to your members as well.

We look forward to seeing you in Singapore real soon.


One of the coaches, Scott Sharpe, showing the ropes to a tree climbing championship competitor.

One of our NParks competitors in the tree climbing championship, Jasmine Koh, getting ready for her heats.

Yong Fook Chyi § Assistant Director (Manpower Development)/ Industry Division § National Parks Board

§ Tel: +65 64717065 § Fax: +65 64723303

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