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Private Governance of Climate Change in Hong Kong: An Analysis of Drivers and Barriers to Corporate Action

Chu, Shu Yi, Heike Schroeder. 2010. Private Governance of Climate Change in Hong Kong: An Analysis of Drivers and Barriers to Corporate Action. Asian Studies Review, 34 (3): 287-308.

Abstract

This study examines how corporate governance of climate change is developing in the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (Hong Kong), Asia’s leading financial centre. It situates corporate actions within the broader framework of urban multi-stakeholder climate governance. In the absence of international obligations under the Kyoto Protocol and government regulation to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, the majority of companies in Hong Kong have yet to tackle climate change. However, a small number of proactive corporations are acting to reduce climate change induced risks and reposition themselves to take advantage of climate change opportunities. Focusing on these leading corporations, this study identifies the motivations for and barriers to action. It concludes that corporations are only one of the necessary players in addressing climate change at the city level. Corporate climate change governance could be improved in Hong Kong by developing a stronger institutional framework and broader civil society support.

Keywords: Hong Kong Special Administrative Region; climate change; corporate governance; private governance; drivers; barriers; risks; opportunities; China

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