Searching for Impurity – Part 3/3

On page 23, Worst Polluted.org reported, “Almost every country in the world has some kind of industrial estate, with Vietnam and Sri Lanka estimated to each have 50 to 60 industrial areas, and India and China reaching hundreds of industrial clusters…”

On page 32, the report said, “Studies in China have found that certain crops, such as corn, are particularly susceptible to lead accumulation when grown in close proximity to smelters.”

There was also a list of four countries at the top of page 32 on regions most impacted by lead pollution and lead smelting. China was in last place with seven sites impacting 158,100 people. The other three countries/areas totaled more than 1.8 million people impacted by this type of pollution.

On page 43, there was a picture of a lead-zinc mining facility in China.

On page 59, there was a picture of a chemical manufacturing plant in China.

That was it. In seventy-six pages, China was only mentioned five times. What a disappointment. I was expecting so much more considering the amount of criticism heaped on China by its enemies and critics.

One city in China was listed as the most polluted in the world in 2006. I wondered why it didn’t make the list for 2011.

Linfen, China is situated in China’s southern Shanxi province along the banks of the Fen River.  In 2010, this city had a population of about 4.3 million inhabitants.

Then in 2007, Times Magazine said that China was home to 20 of the world’s 30 most polluted cities, and said, “Only 1% of China’s 560 million urban residents breathe air that is deemed safe by European Union standards.”

However, it was tragic to learn that China is now leading the clean economy race. The Chinese government is “going for the gold” and “taking this challenge much more seriously than others … doing things differently, making longer-term, sustained commitments that are much larger,” wrote Andrew Winston in the Harvard Business Review. [ Harvard Business Review “China Leads the Clean Economy Race” Sept. 23, 2010 ]

China is investing about US$75 to $100 billion EACH year in clean energy for the 10 years between 2010 and 2020, according to the “country’s ten-year plan that made some jaws drop”. [ Harvard Business Review “China Leads the Clean Economy Race” Sept. 23, 2010 ]

China retained the top spot in 2010 as the world’s leading investor in low-carbon energy technology, according to a report by the US Pew Environment Group, which wrote that China’s “ascendance has been steady and steep … With aggressive clean energy targets and clear ambition to dominate clean energy manufacturing and power generation, China is rapidly moving ahead of the rest of the world.” [ Pew Environment Group report “Who’s Winning the Clean Energy Race 2010?”; BBC News “China tops global clean energy table” March 29, 2011 ]

On an end note, Worst Polluted.org mentioned the United States three times, Canada once and India twenty-three times. I didn’t check for any other countries on this report. As I finished posting this series, I realized that I could not score any points with China’s enemies and critics, since it was a country that many in the West love to hate. In addition, I suspect India is mostly ignored by these same people because it was a Western style democracy.

Return to Searching for Impurity – Part 2 or start with Part 1

For more on the topic of pollution, see The cause of China’s pollution or Contaminated Water and Soil is a Global Problem

______________

Lloyd Lofthouse is the award-winning author of The Concubine Saga. When you love a Chinese woman, you marry her family and culture too. This is the love story Sir Robert Hart did not want the world to discover.

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