Global Climate Activism in Hong Kong: Status Quo and Prospect

Ms Wendi Li1

1The University Of Melbourne, Melbourne, Australia

The past year has seen a wave of climate activism sweeping the globe, largely initiated by young people and then supported by people from older generations. With the efforts of Fridays for Future, an international student movement for climate change, and Extinction Rebellion, a civil organisation dedicated to the advocacy of climate and ecological emergency, a sense of climate crisis has emerged in the global public sphere. As a result, over 7 million people took to the streets to protest for climate actions in the latest September 2019 climate strikes. Hong Kong, as one of the major global cities, did not receive much attention for this cause since it has been facing local political unrest over the same time period. However, what has been neglected is that around 50 citizens staged a demonstration against climate inactions on September 20th in Hong Kong as part of the global climate strike. Drawing on qualitative interviews with young climate strikers in this global city, this paper discusses how they relate themselves to climate change and engage with its globalised risk despite the escalation of local extradition bill protests. In analysing the communication mechanism of young Hong Kong climate activists at the current historical moment, the paper further discusses the prospect of more significant climate strikes in Hong Kong in the future.


Wendi Li is a PhD candidate in Media and Communication at the School of Culture and Communication, the University of Melbourne. Her current project focuses on a comparative study between young people’s political communication on climate change in Hong Kong and Melbourne.



The Asian Studies Association of Australia (ASAA) is the peak body of university experts and educators on Asia in Australia. Established in 1976, we promote and support the study of Asia in Australian universities and knowledge of Asia among the broader community. Our membership is drawn mainly from academics and students, but also includes industry and government Asia experts. We take a strong interest in promoting knowledge about Asia in schools and in contributing to state and Commonwealth government policies related to Asia. We provide informed comment on Asia to a broad public through our bulletin, Asian Currents, and specialist research articles in our journal, Asian Studies Review. Four book series published under our auspices cover Southeast Asia, South Asia, East Asia and Women in Asia.

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