With its fast-expanding carbon footprint, China is moving into the emissions ranks of developed-world countries, The Daily Telegraph said. The country’s per-capita emissions could exceed Britain’s by the end of 2012 and those of the United States by 2017, according to a UN-sponsored report by the Netherlands Environmental Assessment Agency.
China plans to build a series of 10-gigawatt wind-energy sites in the country by 2015, The Financial Times reported. While most of the country’s wind activity has been domestic, global ventures are beginning to emerge, particularly as the Chinese market starts to look crowded.
The state planning body ordered nationwide safety and environmental checks at plants that make dangerous chemicals and threatened to suspend those that cannot fix their problems, Reuters said. The National Development and Reform Commission’s move followed protests in the port city of Dalian, Liaoning province, in August after a toxic-spill scare.
Shale gas may be treated in China as separate from conventional hydrocarbons to encourage companies outside of state-owned industry to invest, Reuters cited officials as saying. By making shale gas a distinct resource, the government hopes to involve smaller, independent companies – while avoiding a repeat of its experience in the coal sector. When coal was opened to many local miners, a number of safety and environmental problems resulted.
China’s southern and central regions, which depend heavily on hydropower, will face a power supply squeeze this winter due to low water storage and strong demand growth, Reuters quoted the National Energy Administration as saying. The China Southern Power Grid Corporation recently estimated that shortages in five provinces -- Guangdong, Guizhou, Guangxi, Yunnan and Hainan -- would amount to some 14 gigawatts.
Officials in southern China promised an inquiry into all land sales after days of sometimes violent protests by villagers from Wukan, Guangdong province, who said they were being pushed off farmland to make way for property development, Nfdaily reported.
Casco Signal, supplier of the signaling equipment on Shanghai’s Metro, denied any responsibility for this week’s line 10 train collision in which some 280 passengers were injured, according to China Economic Net. The denial followed a statement by the rail operator, Shanghai Shentong Metro Group, that human error was to blame for the accident. Agence France-Presse said the crash added to doubts over the safety of China’s rapidly developing transport network.
A poor, natural-disaster-prone county in Hunan province forced villages to hand over their irrigation subsidies to finance a 50-million-yuan (US$7.8 million) temple to attract tourists, Reuters quoted state media as saying. The project – 30 million yuan short -- was suspended when the cash ran out, China National Radio said. The irrigation subsidies were meant to address the effects of frequent floods and droughts. Village officials reportedly were threatened with having their salaries confiscated if they did not comply.
Prepared in cooperation with PACE
China announces a temporary ban on ivory imports but only an outright ban on domestic sales can curb poaching and protect African elephants, say campaigners