17 Jun 2016

Sustainability Hong Kong FuturED#3

Sustainability Hong Kong was the theme of FuturED#3 a speaker event that heard from NGO founders, government officials, eco-entrepreneurs and newspaper editors. Tintin Lam Year 12 spoke about the mission and success of Island School’s environmental group Wanbo before a screening of the film Cowspiracy – a documentary that exposes the destructive nature of the meat, fish and dairy industries and why environmental groups are not talking about them. The afternoon finished with a panel debate.

This week we hear from Andrew Work, Editor-in-chief of the Harbour Times who talks about sustainable politics:

There are three things you need for sustainable politics and a functioning society. You need educated people, people committed to the future and you need a culture of openness and trust.

You have to educate people so they know what a good idea looks like and they can recognize a bad idea.

People in Hong Kong are now committed to the future, we saw that with Occupy Central and the number of student led political parties that have sprung up following that movement.

It’s the media’s job to create a culture of openness and trust.

When you don’t have these things people disengage, they shut-up because no one is listening, they don’t trust anyone which leads to fear and potentially violence as a society of tribalism grows.

Hong Kong right now is in a good place we have a fairly open society and people are committed to the future, people are putting their flag in the ground and saying this place is ours. But just because we are in a good place now doesn’t mean we can’t slide into something worse. If small political groups are fighting for power then they are not fighting to find solutions. You need to think about how you what to get engaged. I got involved aged 15 as a student making changes to school politics and then went on to make changes at a national level. At 19 I was involved in student politics. Now is the time to learn, you can make mistakes now it is ok but think about how you want to engage with the sustainability of Hong Kong long term.