Merrin Pearse's Blog

Lantau Island, Hong Kong
Dr Merrin Pearse is passionate about the Natural Environment (yes animals, bugs and trees) and helping people to realize that economic and environmental sustainability are one. Raised on a dairy farm in New Zealand and with a background in Land Surveying (specializing in precise positioning through the use of GPS equipment) his work has connected him with all continents and taken him to amazing places where he has seen some of the best and worst examples of human "development". He has a wide range of international experience working for Government Departments, SMEs, international companies and NGO’s in quality assurance, auditing, sustainability, benchmarking and community engagement roles which have provided him with a unique perspective on team dynamics. Currently based in Hong Kong with his wife Louise, Merrin is a Communication and Marketing Consultant to Friends of the Earth (HK) 4 days per week. In addition to freelance work, he co-organizes Hong Kong Green Drinks and is an active member of a number of environmental organizations.
Ask and you may receive
January 16, 2013

Recently I was disappointed to see our villages nearest recycling bins being replaced with new bins of smaller capacity.  We already had bins that were regularly overflowing and there were not bins actually within the village itself.
So I sent off a letter to 1823 ( in October.  Within a week they had added back some of the old bins next to the new bins so we had more space.  A great speedy response.
Discussions moved on to the frequency of collection and by the middle of December the contractor to FEHD had been engaged to collect recycling twice per week rather than only once.  So rather than just my local bins I understand other bins on South Lantau are now being emptied more often.
Last phase was the topic of actually having recycling bins within our village.  Luckily the local village representative has now agreed to having...

The power of planting ideas
December 19, 2012

I am passionate about connecting people with nature and through that journey I have had the pleasure of becoming friends with some amazing people.
Trees seem to be a powerful way to connect people with nature, especially when you get your hands dirty planting and caring for them.
Paul Coleman, The Earth Walker, ( who has walked over 47,500 km through 39 nations delivering the environmental message while on a mission to plant 100,000,000 trees, one for every man, woman and child killed in last century of war. 11,350,000 trees have now been planted with the help of friends and supporters from around the world.
Dr Willie Smits, ( an amazing inventor/creator using his forestry skills to...

Hong Kong has a different approach to other countries
November 12, 2012

So the good news is that lots of recycling happens in Hong Kong.  The methods used to recycle are certainly open for discussion though that is not the main point to this post.
What puzzles me is that while the Government boasts about the approx 50% recycling rate and saying that it is worth about HK$8 billion dollars why are they not concerned that they are disposing of HK$8 billion per year into our landfills?
Learn more about the government recycling rates via

Change keeps happening
October 17, 2012

That change in the air at the moment, I find a wonderful thing.  No, I’m not talking about the quality of the air as over the last week … it has been awful (See the graph above from the Hedley Environmental Index  I am referring to the change in the temperature and humidity level.  Yes the seasons, and here in Hong Kong we are now experiencing the transition from those hot summer days and nights to the cooler winter days. 
There are seasons playing a part in our lives in many different ways.  Take for example the financial season.  In Europe you might say they are in a winter season as many countries are relying on their reserves that were harvested back in earlier years.  Whereas in China you might say they are in a late summer with their crops still producing new resources though at a...

Turning anger into action
October 12, 2012

WTF - OMG - Bloody H - I am annoyed and frustrated. 
While it is not a Black Friday today I am in mourning.
Again I learnt that a very good friend of mine is very ill and unfortunately very few of their "friends" are helping them.
Waking to the news of health warnings due to air pollution and watching people throw away their plastic wrapped breakfasts did not help me get back to my positive and optimistic self.
Maybe it time for me to enjoy some more time with my sick friend.
Some of you might be saying T.G.I.F. and today I am! Though more importantly I am glad that I am frustrated as I will talk to my sick friend about what they need most and will be ready to do what I can to provide it for them.
Looking forward to connecting with my friend.
You may also know them by the name of Mother Earth.  If you do shall we connect together?

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