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China top carbon emitter, Beijing under pressure

Original post made by samuel on Jun 13, 2008

China's ranking as top emitter of the main planet-warming gas, carbon dioxide, seemed confirmed by a Dutch report on Friday, putting more pressure on Beijing to come up with their own figures, experts said.

The finding from the Netherlands Environmental Assessment Agency (PBL) is the third published in English by either European or U.S.-based researchers to show China at the top.

It says China's CO2 emissions raced 14 percent ahead of the total emitted by the United States last year.Web Link

China accounted for two-thirds of last year's global 3.1 percent rise in carbon emissions, from consumption of fossil fuels and cement production.

Comments (7)

Posted by ng, a resident of Hoover School
on Jun 13, 2008 at 11:30 am

That's just not possible! We're the evil ones! We're the ones responsible for all the world's ills!

Anyway, what is anyone gonna do, able to do and what are they gonna use to enforce their environmental whimsy?

Posted by julie, a resident of Midtown
on Jun 13, 2008 at 1:07 pm

the coal burnt in china is responsible for 1/3 of the mercury pollution in the SF Bay Area air

never mind the poisoned toys, medicines, food and pet food that pours in from china to the US and elsewhere

Posted by burn baby burn, a resident of Barron Park
on Jun 13, 2008 at 1:29 pm

"China has said that it will consider aspirational targets for reducing greenhouse gas emissions, but not hard targets until 2050, when it anticipates that its per-capita emissions may well match those of the U.S. today,"

So, China is saying that it will only start talking when it is at 5x its current emissions. Sort of turns Kyoto, post-Kyoto and any future "agreement" into a farce.
Really, what's the point if the major world polluter sees fit to increase their output beyond anything the rest of the world can save. My Prius is going back in the garage and I'm buying me that Hummer!

Posted by a, a resident of Adobe-Meadows
on Jun 13, 2008 at 8:55 pm

It's good that we're complaining about China here. But you know what? Our government, aka the Bush administration DOES NOT CARE. The European Union, however, does care and has taken steps to prevent China from sending their people defective goods. Just a week ago the E.U. is demanding that China step up regulation of small manufacturers.

Where is Bush in all of this? MIA. There's the U.S. for ya. Lazy as hell. Missing. Who cares. Off drunk in a bar. Fend for yourselves or move to Europe.

Posted by Mike, a resident of College Terrace
on Jun 14, 2008 at 12:49 am

"China has said that it will consider aspirational targets for reducing greenhouse gas emissions, but not hard targets until 2050, when it anticipates that its per-capita emissions may well match those of the U.S. today,"

Right, because China isi growing at roughly 7% per annum , with projections that that will continue.

At that rate, by 2040 (maybe sooner), almost all of China's industrial infrastructure will be new (from amortization and fantastic growth). Thus, expect China to continue its polluting ways for decades, unless the rest of the world comes down hard. And, even if the latter happens, there will be a ton of internal demand to fill.

This is a very serious problem, and one that is going to require extraordinary and consistent pressure from the rest of the world, as the Chinese government is completely without concern for ethical impacts of policy, unless it threatens the power base.

I would start with a full Olympic boycott.

Posted by Jarred, a resident of Midtown
on Jun 14, 2008 at 9:49 pm

"China's ranking as top emitter of the main planet-warming gas, carbon dioxide, ..."

I would agree with that statement -- if it were true. However, as anyone with even a basic knowledge of the greenhouse effect knows, carbon dioxide is not the main planet-warming gas. The strongest component of the greenhouse effect is due to water vapor, not carbon dioxide. For those of you unfamiliar with this advanced term, water vapor is water in a gaseous state.

"I would start with a full Olympic boycott."

Mike, if you agree to fully boycott the Olympics, I'm confident we can extract a large concession from China in return.

Posted by Greg, a resident of Southgate
on Jun 15, 2008 at 10:28 am

China is using coal, in order to develop itself out of poverty, just like Europe and the United States did and do. However, China is also building nuclear plants, which act to decrease the carbon footprint, relative to coal. China is also working hard on alternatives. Both Europe and the U.S. could learn from China.

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