Climate Change and China

Topics: Greenhouse gas, Carbon dioxide, Natural gas Pages: 3 (1131 words) Published: December 3, 2012
The Ethical Problem of China’s Greenhouse Gas Emissions
In the year 2006, China took over the title of the “largest greenhouse gas emitter” from America, producing the most overall greenhouse gas quantity annually. The Energy Information Administration predicts that China’s emissions will grow at a remarkable 4.2% per year between 1990 and 2030 a growth rate that is higher than any other emitter. The climate problem in China is very serious; if China’s trend toward producing greenhouse gases still increases in the future, Earth’s environment will be further stressed and other nations’ efforts to reduce greenhouse gases will be cancelled out. China’s action exemplifies an ethical problem called “the tragedy of commons“, which means China, in pursuing its self-interests by emitting large amount of green house gases, creates detrimental effects to the global environment. In the next few paragraphs, I will elaborate on the ethical problem that China is facing and what to do about those issues, focusing on how much China should do to protect the environment. China is now facing the dilemma of improving its economy. While it is enhancing its economy at an incredibly fast rate, China has a conflict between protecting the environment and speeding economic development. China is experiencing a boost in its economy while increasing 1.5 billion tons of greenhouse gas emission annually. China’s fast-growing economy is fueled by large product exports. China has the ability and advantage to compete with other industrial nations in terms of cost, since it has abundant coal, which accounts for two-thirds of China’s total energy consumption.The problem with China’s coal usage is that coal emits far more greenhouse gases than petroleum or other fossil fuels, and an even greater amount of greenhouse gases than renewable energy sources. However, China is certainly not willing to sacrifice its economy and its competitiveness in order to reduce greenhouse gases. China’s actions on...
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