Let it shine? HK's largest LED billboard raises light pollution concern

Outdoor advertisements are one of the effective ways to reach out to customers, but if it's built as big as five tennis courts, it might cause a bit of an environmental problem.

A massive full-HD LED screen, which was unveiled on the facade of Sogo Department Store in Causeway Bay last Friday, has already raised concerns from an environmental activist group, worrying that people might suffer from nuisance caused by the bright light, or light pollution by the overly bright billboard.

Measuring approximately 19 meters by 72 meters, equivalent to over five tennis courts, the digital billboard is capable of displaying six vertical images in full HD manufactured by Mitsubishi Electric, claiming to be the largest LED billboard in the city.

The gigantic billboard began officially operating on October 27.

According to SCMP, Green Sense's founder Roy Tam said, “We asked [Sogo] to not install the LED board, but they refused. I think Causeway Bay residents nearby will be affected by those lights”.

There is no specific legislation in Hong Kong on outdoor lighting, while under the "charter on external lighting" announced by the government in 2016, owners and lighting managers are invited to switch off decorative, promotional or advertising lighting installations by 11 pm or midnight.

Sogo said it has signed the charter, pledging to switch off the board from 11 pm to 7 am.