China’s contribution to global climate change increasingly draws the attention of scientists and policy-makers around the globe. But the rising social and economic costs of desertification and severe water shortages in China have brought the issue of climate change to the fore in Chinese domestic policy circles as well. What effect has climate change already had in China? What steps can China take to minimize its environmental footprint, without hindering its exponential economic growth?
On September 18, experts from the Brookings Institution, the Earth Institute of Columbia University and the Academy of Macroeconomic Research under the National Development and Reform Commission of China discussed China’s economic outlook within the context of climate change, the potential for alternative energy use in China and the specifics of China’s greenhouse gas emissions challenges and water crisis.
“The 21st century has revalued these small geographies. That’s what the 21st century demands,” Katz said, noting that these days, “[w]e aren’t innovating in isolated business parks” in the suburbs.