EconomicRise of China
Chinaand India have changed their demand and usage of energy over time. Specifically, in China, the demand for energy has grown at an averageof 5 percent between 1978 and 1966. Although the rate of energydemand fell in absolute terms for China between the year 1998 and1997, there was a 7.8 percent increase in the GDP. It indicates thatChina over reported the growth in GDP. Also, China has witnessed anincrease in energy demanded by 11 percent in the six-year periodbetween 2001 and 2007. In the year 2006, the demand for energy inChina grew four times than the predicted 16 percent. Consequently,Chinas demand was equal to one-sixth of the United States of Americaand created interest in how much more would come in the future(Shalizi, 2007).
Thenew forecast for China’s demand for energy in 2030 is expected toreach 3.8 billion tons of oil, which will be higher than that ofIndia. As a result, China will account for 22 percent of globalenergy consumption by 2030. The consumption is more than that of theEurope Russia and Japan combined. Moreover, China will havesurpassed the energy use of the United States of America. Theincrease in Chinas use of energy has been attributed to the growth intransport and consumption industries, which is not correct. China ishighly engaged in energy-intensive heavy industry there are moresteel mills than garment factories. Industries account for 48 percentof the overall economic activity in China. A single unit of theeconomic activity in a steel mill requires four times more energythan in India. Economic activity in China is directed towardsinvestment. China has adopted a strategy to produce domestically asopposed to importing. There are more plants to produce aluminum andsteel. For example, China accounts for 49 percent of globalproduction of glass for flats, 48 percent of cement production, 35percent of steel production and 28 percent of aluminum production(Bergsten, 2008).
Justlike China, India has also increased its oil energy consumptiontremendously in the 21st century. It is averaging at 40-50% energyconsumption increase. Nevertheless, the combined oil consumption inboth China and India averages between 9% and 10% of global use. Since the 1990s, oil consumption in India has reduced slightly asseveral industries that relied on fossil fuel have begun using cleanalternative energy such as hydroelectric power (Shalizi, 2007).
Theoverall emphasis of production in China and India has not comewithout challenges. Although the governments have increasedinvestments in the form of finance to increase production, there isneglect of the environmental policies. The increased number ofindustries has led to doubled rates of pollution. The poor quality ofair in China and India has resulted in social unrest. In particular,the industries have led to an increase in the concentration ofsuspended particulates. Pollution is common in the northern part ofChina. The rise in pollution is partly due to the introduction of afree winter heating for homes and offices by the government. Thegovernment provided free coal for fuel boilers as a necessary rightfor the citizens. The combustion of coal releases pollutants andspecifically particulate matter that is harmful to human health(Downs, 2000).
Coalsplants have contributed to air pollution in the form of soot andsulfur dioxide. The air pollution has led to increased health risks.The risks are linked to particulate matter with an aerodynamicdiameter less than 2.5microns (PM2.5.) The PM2.5 although small,beyond a given surface, it is prone to contain various toxic andheavy metals, acid oxides pollutants, chemicals, bacteria and viruses(Bergsten, 2008).
Chinaand India have the highest rate of carbon dioxide emissions in theworld. The increased pollution in China has attracted mediaattention. For instance, the lack of appropriate waste disposal,removal and processing have magnified the pollution menace.Increasedpollution in China and India has resulted in increased health risk.The PM2.5 concentration levels have gone beyond the guidelines of theWorld Health Organization (WHO). Additionally, there are higherimplied risks to the cardiovascular and neurovascular systems.Besides, the pollution increases the chances of contracting cancer,and it is one of the leading causes of premature deaths. Besides,Young children face an increased risk of premature brain developmentdue to the exposure to oxides. Second, the pollution is associatedwith premature deaths in China. It causes approximately 4000 deathsin China. The deaths in turn cause economic losses approximated to244 million USD. If the air pollution problem can be solved, itwould result in 75% reduction in the PM2.5 and lower deaths. Such areduction is associated with economic benefits of about USD 186million (Chen, 2009).
Thereare various possible responses to curb the effect of air pollution.The first approach is the adoption of advanced ways to monitor theconcentration of the particulate matter in the environment. Increasedmonitoring should help the advisory team to increase pressure onpolluters so they can comply with the regulations. The secondintervention is the use of penalties in the civil law. The governmentshould make the polluters pay according to their pollution as adisincentive to pollution. According to energy analysts, the energyconsumption in both India and China will continue growing at a higherrate than their local production can support. As a result, bothnations will need to offset the energy deficit through imports.However, the import amounts will be determined by whether thecountries will continue to rely absolutely on the eco-unfriendlyfossil fuels or they will invest in clean alternative energy such asthe wind and solar power (Shalizi, 2007).
Shalizi, S.(2007). Energy and emissions local and global effects of the giants’rise. Winters, L. A., & Yusuf, S. (Eds.), Dancingwith giants : China, India, and the global economy.Washington, 133 – 172. DC: World Bank : Institute of Policy Studies
Bergsten, C.(2008). China`srise: Challenges and opportunities.Washington, DC: Peterson Institute for International Economics :
Downs, E.(2000). China`squest for energy security.Santa Monica, CA: Rand.
EnergyImplications of China’s Growth
Chen, X.(2009). Shanghairising: State power and local transformations in a global megacity.
EnergyImplications of China’s Growth