Talking Points: should we double the price of gas to force people to rethink driving?

Compiled by Jamie Lam

Hate it when you can’t talk back? Well, you can with Young Post. Have your say and share with students around Hong Kong

Compiled by Jamie Lam |

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Michael Kwok Pui-hin, 16, Law Ting Pong Secondary School

I think it’s a good idea. There are several reasons for this.

First, traffic jams present a serious problem, because they prevent police from reaching the site of an accident quickly and possibly saving lives.

Second, Hong Kong has a wonderful public transport system. People can pretty much go anywhere they want by train or bus. Also, taking public transport instead of a private car or taxi saves a lot of money.

Finally, air pollution is another big problem in the city. Cars produce a lot of exhaust fumes, and if everyone keeps using them, the world will become a really smoggy place.

So let’s double the price of petrol right now!

Joe Wong Lik-hang, 15, Workers’ children secondary school

I absolutely disagree. Petrol prices are already very high in Hong Kong. If we double the prices, the living standards of the city’s middle class would be badly affected.

A lot of Hongkongers still drive to work. If all of them switched to public transport, there would be chaos. Also, train, bus and taxi fares would increase. Overall, doubling the price of petrol would create a massive financial burden on the public.

Donna Izabel, 15, The HKTA The Yuen Yuen Institute No 3 Secondary School

Oh, that’s so funny. Hong Kong is already one of the world’s most unaffordable cities, and now this? What possible reason could there be for such a big price hike?

Is it because of the accidents and the traffic? Why should a majority of the drivers suffer just because of a few irresponsible ones? Road accidents happen all the time, in every city. What’s more, traffic issues should be resolved by the government. They can build bridges that connect Hong Kong to China so they should be able to do the same within the city. This would help ease the traffic problem.

Also, a petrol price hike would mean a rise in bus fares. Then everyone who takes public transport would suffer. We would just be giving more money to the petrol companies.

There’s no need to create more problems. Hong Kong already has enough arguments and conflicts.

Arella Ng, 12, Christian Alliance International School

Why double? Let’s quadruple the price of petrol instead!

Firstly, let’s consider the damage petrol has done to the forests. Rare species of plants are becoming extinct because of global warming. We use these plants to make medicines and other useful everyday products.

Secondly, we all know that car accidents happen all the time. So what’s the point of driving if you are going to end up hurting yourself, and spending more time and money to repair the damages to your car?

Finally, there are several eco-friendly alternatives to driving. Walking or biking to work can help the world become a better place. I think that anyone who drives a car should pay a lot more for petrol.

Pansy Tsui Pui-sze, 17, Leung Shek Chee College

I couldn’t agree more. Traffic jams and pollution are thorny issues challenging every major city in the world. Doubling the price of petrol would force more people to use public transport or bicycles.

Car exhaust fumes contribute to global warming. I think everyone has an obligation to protect our planet. Unfortunately, many people are selfish, and prefer convenience over conservation.

People in Hong Kong care about money. So I think increasing the price of petrol would convince them to stop driving. Hopefully then using public transport and riding bicycles would become a norm in the city.

In our next Talking Points, we’ll discuss:

How would you react to a racist comment in public?

We are now accepting your answers for this topic. To take part, email your answer with your name, age, and school, along with a nice, clear selfie (make sure it’s not blurry), to [email protected] by lunchtime on Monday. Don’t forget to include “Talking Points” in the subject line.

Edited by Ben Young