Wednesday, 7 February 2007

China and the Environment: Round up of Stories

The relationship between economic growth and environmental degradation is a close one.

This blog will document news stories on the state of the environment in China.

China Eyes Summer Launch for Carbon Credit Exchange
BEIJING - Beijing plans to launch a pilot exchange for carbon trade this summer to be ready to win a slice of the multi-billion dollar market by 2008 and capitalise on China's emergence as an hotspot for emissions-cutting projects.

The exchange would aim to combine sales of carbon credits valid under the Kyoto Protocol on climate change with a market in voluntary emissions reductions like those traded in Chicago, government and UN officials said on Tuesday.

N.W. China Drought Dries up Water Supplies
BEIJING - Drought in China's northwestern province of Shaanxi has left at least 300,000 people short of drinking water and similar weather conditions have afflicted other parts of the country, Xinhua news agency said on Tuesday.

Below-average levels of rainfall and higher-than-usual temperatures in Shaanxi in recent weeks had also affected thousands of hectares of cropland and curbed water supplies for 60,000 animals, it said.

Drought had also affected areas of northeast, northwest and southwest China over the past month, it cited the weather bureau as saying.

Conditions in some parts of the country were set to deteriorate, with the worst drought in five years expected to hit central parts of Ningxia region in the spring, it said.

China Says Global Warming in Hands of Wealthy Nations

BEIJING - Rich nations are responsible for greenhouse gases fuelling global warming, China said on Tuesday, urging them to cut emissions and deflecting questions about whether Beijing will accept limits.

Spokeswoman for China's Foreign Ministry, Jiang Yu, said Beijing was willing to contribute to curbing greenhouses gases from industry, agriculture and vehicles, which a UN scientific panel last week reported was almost certainly behind rising average temperatures threatening wrenching climate change.

But Jiang told a regular news briefing that wealthy countries bore the blame, and the solution lay in their hands.

"It must be pointed out that climate change has been caused by the long-term historic emissions of developed countries and their high per-capita emissions," she said.

"Developed countries bear an unshirkable responsibility," she said, adding that they should "lead the way in assuming responsibility for emissions cuts".

China is Set on Curbing Fossil Fuels -- Climate Chief

BEIJING - China's top climate official said on Tuesday that Beijing is determined to curb the use of fossil fuels behind global warming, but deflected questions of whether the big emitter will accept caps on greenhouse gases.

Qin Dahe, chief of the China Meteorological Administration, said the nation's leaders worried that global warming, bringing intensifying droughts, floods and heat waves in its wake, would undermine development goals.

"The Chinese government is taking climate change extremely seriously," Qin told a news conference. "President Hu Jintao has said that climate change is not just an environmental issue but also a development issue, ultimately a development issue."

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