🌊 Free Tide: Snowden Angels get asylum in Canada
Doctors are real burnt out and real sad
Today on Tide:
HK’s coolest and most ambitious sustainability business conference
What to expect on the Policy Address today
I have an embarrassing story to tell re: America’s most famous whistleblower
Alaska’s out of Alaskan King Crab
Being sustainable is good for business: Day 1 of ReThink, HK’s most ambitious business sustainability conference, as told by HT’s Managing Editor-in-Chief.
What a first day it was – K.S Wong, Secretary for the Environment gave a rousing opening speech on Hong Kong’s ‘aggressive’ Carbon reduction schemes (“Many economies say they will reach Carbon Neutrality by 2050, but we have said latest 2050”) inspiring everyone to get as much out of the conference as possible.
Inspiration perhaps is at the heart of the conference. From panels on ocean protection to diversity in business, corporate responsibility and more, inspiration – or rather how to inspire new ideas, new concepts and new ways of building a sustainable future – was the name of the game. It didn’t work all the time; our freelance reporter Beth Kong found Coca-Cola’s reference to a 1960s ad that featured a couple of black actors as an example of stellar diversity, to be a little meh at best in 2021 (and I concur).
But what was probably most surprising was the number of corporate businesses that truly wanted to make some change. Joshua Wong of Hong Kong Shanghai Hotels (better known as the Peninsula Group) made it clear how sustainable seafood isn’t just some out there hippy stuff that’s bad for business, but that being sustainable is good for business – it makes sure that you can stay in business:
“My suppliers told me they just couldn’t get any more Alaskan King Crab. Because of climate change, there just wasn’t any they could give me.”
— Joshua Wong, Hong Kong Shanghai Hotels
This idea that sustainability and business have to work hand-in-hand was concurred by Walter van Hattum, from the EU Trade office – their new Green Deal strives to make sure sustainability is the goal; if your country isn’t sustainable…good luck getting on their good side.
This is all exciting stuff, and there’s more to come tomorrow.
For now, please watch this video of a robot cleaning the air.
IT’S SO CUTE
New cases: 7 (imported)
Compulsory testing was gazetted for 14 specified premises. Check out Annex 1 to see where and Annex 2 for testing centre information.
‘Snowden Angels’ restart in Canada
Paid readers get to hear the super embarrassing story of this one time I was on the phone with Edward Snowden’s lawyer. Upgrade your subscription to get the dirty details:
Four Sri Lankan refugees (two parents and their children), known for hiding Edward Snowden in their homes, were approved for asylum in Canada and landed in their new home country on Tuesday. They’re the second family who aided the American whistleblower to be granted asylum and move to Montreal.
In 2013, a number of refugees in Hong Kong offered space in their homes to whistleblower Edward Snowden, who at the time just revealed many of the NSA’s top-secret documents to the world. The seven refugees, known as the Snowden Angels, are made up of two families – one from the Philippines and the other from Sri Lanka – and one Sri Lankan ex-soldier.
Ajith Pushpakumara, the former soldier, is still in Hong Kong and his asylum claim is still left in limbo.
Now, for my story (exclusive to paid subscribers):
Don’t nap during the two-hour Policy Address challenge
The annual policy address is coming today (whoa, a year flew by already?), and apparently, it’s going to be a whole two-hour delivery. We all know that all those in attendance will be very engaged and very not asleep (very paywalled).
"This year's policy address will focus on the the future, which includes economic development and integration into the country's development plan. Both are important matters," Lam said.
"But I also fully understand the main issues that people want solved are housing and land supply."
— Chief Executive Carrie Lam, as reported on RTHK
Don’t expect pandemic-support policies either, Lam says. Time to look forward to the future. Except for the future of housing and supply, apparently.
Other political updates:
HK will be amending its tax laws to fit EU standards and address concerns of “double non-taxation”.
The former chief of now-defunct Tiananmen vigil organiser group pleads not guilty to incitement charge.
This ongoing court case will decide whether or not people not physically present can be charged with rioting.
What else is happening?
September sizzled away to earn the spot of hottest on record, with a mean temperature of 29.7 degrees.
HK’s doctors are hella overworked and hella sad.
Rents are predicted to hit a real high (record-breaking high) over the next few months.
Events / Exhibitions etc.
Pub night anyone? We all love a fun night of booze and testing your knowledge of everything and anything. Even better if you don’t have to leave the house.
That’s all folks!
Remember you can learn about my super-secret super-embarrassing as heck phone call with Edward Snowden’s lawyer on Paid Tide:
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