Having lived in Hong Kong, I always felt the weather seemed to be getting warmer and warmer. Even during the nights, it was unbearable to sleep, some days it was even tough to walk outside in the morning and breathe. The rainfall and typhoons were increasing and I was starting to be worried about the climate change that was affecting us. Climate Change affects all of us, but since the late 19th century Hong Kong has experienced a significant warming trend. A factor is global warming but the local urbanization also contributes to this warming trend. The table below shows the Annual Mean Temperature in Hong Kong from 1885-2015.
Warming trends have created nights that are almost unbearable, the hot nights in Hong Kong has increased by manifold while the cold nights have decreased significantly. When I visited my family over in Hong Kong, I would have trouble sleeping because of the hot and humid nights. Even an Air Conditioner didn’t help at all. Not only has hot humid nights increased, but so has extreme precipitation. The rainfall recorded by the Hong Kong Observatory headquarters were broken several times in the last few decades which is not a normality. It used to take several decades to break the record in the past. Another evidence of climate change is that the data shows the rise of mean sea level at Victoria Harbor. Shown Below:
According to hko.gov, the projection of Hong Kong’s temperature for the 21st century will rise by 1.5 to 3.5 degree Celsius. As expected, the annual hot nights are expected to rise significantly and the number of cold days is expected to drop also. The annual rainfall is expected to generally increase in the 21st century, and the sea level in Victoria harbor is expected to rise further. With the warming climate and the waters rising the threat of cyclones increases. The prediction for Typhoons similar to the Typhoon Hagupit in 2008 which was a 1 in 50-year event, is expected to become a 1 in 5 years to 1 in 10-year event by 2021-20140 if the sea level prediction comes to fruition. Even though Hong Kong is still developing ways to combat climate change, i feel like the Hong Kong government should clearly identify the risks, reinforce infrastructures, inform and educate the public, establish programs to help inform public and help prepare for the future climate change catastrophes. Even though these programs will help combat climate change, there are things that are already done to the climate and is irreversible.