China's Green Revolution

When will China do something about the cloud of air pollution that drifts across the Pacific? It’s going to cause an ice age, for goodness sakes. Can’t we have economic growth, without asthma? This isn’t to say China shouldn’t increase her footprint – isn’t the Three Gorges complex just like America’s Grand Coulee and Hoover Dam and many other glorious national achievements? It’s their river.

China’s Three Gorges become 17.5 Gigawatts.

On the other hand, there is a plume of emissions from coal plants, oil combustion, flares and fires, that wafts across the Pacific from Asia to America, and it is thousands of miles wide.

It comes from China, workshop of the world, from its burgeoning economy, and let’s not say there aren’t other Asian tigers emitting plenty of their own, because they are. From Korean furnaces to Indonesian rainforests, the burning is epic.

So here one may comment on our “China’s Eco-Crisis” feature report by Gordon Feller. The fact that in the last ten years India has improved their energy intensity from 30,000 BTUs per $1.00 GNP to only 4,500, and that China has improved their energy intensity from 46,000 BTUs per $1.00 of GNP to less than 6,500 – while America is now behind them at a greatly improved 7,000 – is very, very encouraging. We are greener and greener – dramatically.

Perhaps projections of solar adoption and retrofitting are far, far below potential, as well. Perhaps adaptation through free enterprise is the freedom humanity needs to create the weath that will let us tackle anything, be it global warming or global cooling.

So wither China? Is it possible they might at least remove the particulates and most noxious pollutants from their industrial emissions? That would certainly be cheaper than stopping the burning entirely, or sequestering all the CO2! And if we argue that CO2 may be terrible, why don’t we end biodiesel subsidies in Europe? That would probably help put out the flames in Indonesia, where the CO2 belched to burn rainforests to grow biofuel dwarfs the CO2 output of our industries.

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.