By Anders Lorenzen
Starting a climate protest is one thing when you live in an open and democratic country that encourages it such as Sweden (the birthplace of Greta Thunberg’s school strike for the climate), but another in China which increasingly is becoming more and more authoritarian as evidenced by the crackdown in Hong Kong. If you criticise the Chinese government about anything ranging from climate to human rights you’re seen as an ‘enemy of the state’.
Despite this risk, that is exactly what Howey Ou, the then 17th-year-old Chinese climate activist who started the climate strike movement in China decided to do. I caught up with her last year (she has since turned 18) to discuss her powerful experiences about just how much she needed to sacrifice to make a stand, and why she was so determined to do so regardless.
Ou’s is a heartbreaking story but also a powerful one about dedication and a preparedness to put her own future at risk to defend the climate.
You can watch the full interview below.