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Pollution and the Chinese Future
Alex Steffen, 9 Jun 06

Pollution and other ecological impacts of industry are sapping a tenth of the value of the entire Chinese economy:

"Environmental damage is costing the government roughly 10 percent of the country's gross domestic product, estimated Zhu Guangyao, deputy chief of the State Environmental Protection Agency. ...The conflict between protecting the environment and encouraging development is becoming more serious, [Zhu] said. A shortage of resources, a fragile ecological balance and insufficient environmental protection capacity are becoming critical problems hindering China's development."

As Pan Yue said, the Miracle will end soon, if China doesn't act quickly. Now we're seeing why cutting edge Chinese projects, like Dongtan, are getting so much support from the PRC. Those Chinese leaders who care about the future of their country realize that their choices are green, or collapse.

(Image: Ed Burtynsky, Nanjing Steel, Jiangsu Province, 2005. Used with permission.)

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Most interesting thing I saw in this article:
"Despite the efforts of half a million environmental officials in his agency and other organizations, China's environmental picture is worsening and "allows for no optimism," he said as he issued a report that described the situation as "grave."

I looked it up, the EPA in the U.S. has 17,850 employees. China's has 500,000.
u.s. = 300,000,000 people
EPA = 17,850
hence 1 environmental employee for every 16,806 Americans.
China = 1,306,313,812
EPA = 500,000
hence 1 environmental employee for ever 2,612 Chinese.

Just interesting to see that China's environmental agency is almost 28 times bigger than the U.S. for a population only about 4 times the size of the U.S.

BTW did you guys catch the fuel effeciency law put out in 2005? Taken that transporation produces over 20% of emissions in the U.S., fuel effeciency laws at least mean as the automobiles grow in China their impact on emissions will probably be less.

Posted by: andrew jones on 10 Jun 06



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