According to Business Week, China is quickly becoming an ecological wasteland, home to some of the world's most polluted cities. China suffers from rampant water shortages, soil erosion, and acid rain. Most importantly, China's growth is taking a toll on public health. Some key points:
- China leads the world in
- China needs
to diversify from its heavy dependence on coal for energy -- or at
least encourage investment in cleaner coal-burning technologies now
common in the West and Japan.
- China must improve energy efficiency
across the country. There's huge energy waste, thanks
to primitive coal-mining techniques, loose building-construction codes,
and inefficient factories.
- For every $1 of GDP
produced, China spends three times the world average on energy.
Why should the Chinese government be concerned?
- A World Bank
study estimated that environmental damage costs China some $170 billion
a year in lost productivity and associated health care.
- Runaway economic growth with little thought of environmental side
effects can provoke a societal backlash.
way. For if it does, China may be rich, but who will want to live