If None of Us but Trees are Left in Hong Kong
This workshop will be conducted in both Cantonese and English
If one day all of us vanished in Hong Kong, would there be any evidence that we all, and the society and the humanities that we cultivated, have ever existed?
You may have these few things in mind—architecture, literature, and museum collections. They are indeed some vivid examples of man-made creations that mark humanity. In this workshop, we will explore a less-taken path: looking at some trees. Perhaps it is a little counter-intuitive, as we tend to associate trees with the Mother Nature, not as a token of civilisation. But did you ever notice, that the name of Hong Kong (Heong Gong) is the best testament to the claim that trees are the keepers of our history? Indeed--Heong refers to a now endangered tree called agarwood (or Heong tree). Not only did we get our name from these precious trees, their bark was historically used to made cloth paper—on which our history was literally written. Thanks to Google Earth, we are going to take a virtual journey and examine a variety of trees at different corners—and to glimpse some stories of Hong Kong. At each stop, we will have some virtual, interactive activities to fully explore the places.
The next part of the workshop is to look ahead: Climate change unfortunately will cause sea level rise and storm surge, we will use a simulation model to find out what parts of Hong Kong will submerge below the water level by 2050. We will be losing some of these valuable trees, and perhaps the memory and humanities these trees embody. You will have the time to imagine what our city may look like in the next few decades.
I hope that this workshop will ultimately reconcile the three thematic sessions of our Forum today: "City Planning", "Climate Resilience", and "Nature Conservation"—and reimagine the future of Hong Kong while keeping the Nature in our equation.
April 10 (Sat)