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Chinese Report Warns of Global Warming Threat

Chinese Report Warns of Global Warming Threat

Global warming will cause China to suffer from dire food and drinking water shortages, with water supply imbalances, severe weather events and rising temperatures, according to a report compiled by Chinese scientists under government supervision. The report projects that the cost of growing food will increase, and that grain production in the country of 1.4 billion will decline between 5 and 20 percent by mid-century. Despite the serious potential consequences of unchecked global warming, the report predicts that  China’s greenhouse gas emissions will only begin to decline around 2030, with significant declines not coming until 2050 or so.

Government Sets Sights on Carbon Caps

China has committed to significant reductions in carbon intensity — a measure of carbon emissions by unit of GDP — aiming to decrease carbon intensity by 40-45 percent by 2020 from 2005 levels. This week the Chinese government recently directed five provinces and two cities to declare and attain overall emissions caps. In addition to setting hard limits, the seven cities and provinces – Beijing, Tianjin, Shanghai, Chongqing, Guangdong, Hubei and Shenzhen – will establish a carbon rights exchange, in effect a carbon trading scheme, similar to the European Emissions Trading Scheme. The plan also calls for the building of low-carbon development zones and residential communities.

No National Target for the U.S.

China is the the world’s largest overall emitter of greenhouse gases, followed by the U.S., which has a population one-quarter the size of China’s.The U.S. has no national carbon reduction goals, though legislation in California,  the Global Warming Solutions Act (AB 32), requires  the state to reduce carbon emissions to 1990 levels (427 million metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalent ) by 2020.

Beijing Government Bows to Public Pressure on Dirty Air Numbers

In another sign of changing attitudes, the Beijing government has begun posting more accurate measurements of air quality in the capital, following public pressure and a social media effort spearheaded by the U.S. Embassy. For months citizens have been complaining about the disparity between the official air quality measurements and the readings by meters placed by the US Embassy and broadcast via a Twitter account, @BeijingAir (currently with over 17,000 followers.) The government readings will be adjusted to include smaller particles that were not being counted. On some days, the old government measurements touted healthy air quality even while the city was blanketed in smog.

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Photo: Haze over eastern China. NASA/GSFC, MODIS Rapid Response, public domain

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105 comments

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2:52PM PST on Feb 8, 2012

Noted.

12:09AM PST on Jan 30, 2012

China is putting an average of one new coal plant online every week. Dirty coal is responsible for 40% of global warming, and is not being banned by greedy governments fast enough and everywhere as it should be. Canada's vicious criminal Harper is on an all-out campaign to destroy any recovery from climate chagne with his filthy tar sands, the dirtiest oil in the world. Harper actually strategizes to block climate change talks and lay massive environmental waste to his own country.

12:34AM PST on Jan 27, 2012

China is beating the U.S. in everything else, so it only follows that they would beat us in acknowledging and addressing climate change. Sigh....

3:58PM PST on Jan 25, 2012

HOPEFULLY THE PENNY WILL FINALLY DROP IN THE UK ALSO.

10:25AM PST on Jan 25, 2012

All countries need to work together on this crap-it affects the whole world. Wake up you money hungry bleeps running the country.

9:56AM PST on Jan 25, 2012

The Us gets it about the environment. We have the Clean Water and Air acts. The problem is that the agencies have been headed by pollution ok directors. The polluters have taken over the government and gutted the programs that were set up to protect us. Remember when the Ohio
river caught fire? I do. There has been a tremendous improvement since then. But we are back sliding and need to stop.

9:46AM PST on Jan 25, 2012

If the Chinese get it, although this is just a teeny step, why the hell can't American's?

2:50AM PST on Jan 25, 2012

Thanks

2:52PM PST on Jan 24, 2012

Don't you just love the prime example we set: "Do as we say, not as we do."

2:46PM PST on Jan 24, 2012

We really need to install carbon caps and get serious about reduction!!! Meaning, we all, and this includes the biggest emitters/polluters! No more ads for the " clean coal" delusion!

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