2/19/10

Environmental China, February 18th to February 25th, 2010, Issue 48

OPINION

China: Bigger, badder, and greener than the U.S.? (Washington Examiner, 2/25/2010) China, one of the most polluted countries on Earth, “is already beating the U.S. to clean energy jobs,” gushes Tony Kreindler of the Environmental Defense Fund, and “is quickly becoming the global powerhouse in clean energy manufacturing and innovation, dwarfing the efforts of America.”

Control firecrackers, protect civil rights (China Daily, 2/24/2010) The gaiety of the Spring Festival is welcome, but not the air and noise pollution. The celebration of the Lunar New Year is cherished, but not at the expense of others. Our right to a clean and quiet environment is always violated by fireworks during the festival.

Can China’s farms cope with urbanization and pollution? (Greenfudge, 2/24/2010) As China continues to rapidly develop and urbanize, increasing pressure is put on the farmland of the Asian superpower. Pollution from toxic factory waste and an inordinate use of nitrogen fertilizers – more than twice the global average – are deteriorating the quality of China’s soil. Expanding urban areas are also diminishing the country’s precious arable land.

Environmental taxes don’t tackle real problem in China (Global Times, 2/21/2010) In classic economics, the theoretical argument for environmental taxes was put forward by Arthur Cecil Pigou, a British economist. In his book, Welfare Economics, he said we need to draw taxes from activities that have bad external effects such as environmental pollution, to compensate for the damage done by such activities.

PUBLIC SECTOR/NGOs

China Times: Taiwan urgently needs green revolution (Taiwan News, 2/25/2010) The premiere of the film "Plus or Minus Two Degrees Celsius, " which is the Taiwan version of "An Inconvenient Truth, " has raised hopes among many local people that the problem of Taiwan's deteriorating environment would finally be addressed.

China’s green groups start year of the tiger with consumer campaign (Guardian, 2/23/2010) As China winds down from its biggest ever binge of spring festival feasting and fireworks, environmentalists have launched a new drive to persuade consumers to spend more responsibly.

Extinct animals are quickly forgotten: the baiji and shifting baselines (Mongabay, 2/23/2010) In 2006 a survey in China to locate the endangered Yangtze River dolphin, known as the baiji, found no evidence of its survival. Despondent, researchers declared that the baiji was likely extinct. Four years later and the large charismatic marine mammal is not only 'likely extinct', but in danger of being forgotten, according to a surprising new study "Rapidly Shifting Baselines in Yangtze Fishing Communities and Local Memory of Extinct Species" in Conservation Biology.

Factory’s pollution victimizes half a million people in Central China (The Epoch Times, 2/22/2010) A factory in Hunan Province has been emitting toxic metals which have polluted water sources in over ten townships. Though cancer cases have skyrocketed, and 51,834 children have been identified with excessive blood levels of lead and cadmium, victims are powerless, since the company is a state-owned enterprise.

Electric bikes on a roll in China (AFP, 2/21/2010) Chinese commuters in their millions are turning to electric bicycles -- hailed as the environmentally-friendly future of personal transport in the country's teeming cities.

M is for Magnesium and Memory (Examiner, 2/18/2010) Three studies recently have highlighted the benefits of adequate magnesium intake in older adults.

CORPORATIONS

Dam plans open gates to tough choices ahead (IPS, 2/25/2010) The Nu River flows from the Tibetan highlands through China’s western Yunnan province, cutting between two mountain ranges before rushing through Burma into the Andaman Sea. It is home to a third of the country’s ethnic groups and a diverse ecosystem of 7,000 species of plants and 80 rare or endangered animals and fish.

China Green Material Technologies, Inc. to expand annual production capacity by nearly 160% to 22,000 tons (PRNewswire, 2/25/2010) China Green Material Technologies, Inc. (OTC Bulletin Board: CAGM; "CAGM" or "the Company"), a Chinese leader in developing and manufacturing starch-based biodegradable fast-moving consumer goods packaging, today announced the Company has acquired a new manufacturing facility and plans to relocate in May 2010, expanding its capacity by nearly 160%.

Chinese solar manufacturing company proposing $20.7 million Austin plant (The American-Statesman, 2/25/2010) A Chinese solar energy company is proposing to build a solar-panel plant in Austin, investing $20.7 million and creating more than 300 jobs.

China pollution concerns dash Hummer deal (Industry Week, 2/25/2010) China's environmental concerns have dashed Tengzhong's dream of buying the iconic Hummer brand from General Motors.

China solar stocks green on Deutsche Bullish Call (Greenstocks, 2/25/2010) China solar stocks have been crushed over the past month, but today are green on a day when the market is down significantly. This is the kind of relative strength that indicates that perhaps they have reached a turning point. I think it’s too soon to call a bottom in the China solar stocks, but this is a good start. The relative strength certainly isn’t without a catalyst .. Deutsche came out with a bullish call this morning and GT Solar (SOLR) announced a big order for its ingot furnaces in China which indicates expansion of capacity.

China faces shortages of migrant workers (Financial Times, 2/25/2010) One day last week, the welcoming committee sent by the world’s largest manufacturer of microwave ovens waited in vain outside the main railway station in Guangzhou, capital of China’s southern Guangdong province.

China poised for big role in future of biotech crops (Des Moines Register, 2/24/2010) Genetically engineered crops are hot in Brazil, where Pioneer Hi-Bred is benefiting from the popularity of biotech corn seed. But the country to watch in coming years could be China, according to a group that tracks the technology.

Environmental liabilities increasing in China under new torts law (Lexology, 2/23/2010) On Dec 26, 2009, China's National People's Congress approved a new torts law that will increase the liabilities forenvironmental pollution. We see this as another step forward in China’s environmental protection movement, and American companies should understand the potential liabilities when they conduct business in or with China.

4 central SOEs battle over electric car charge station market (People’s Daily, 2/23/2010) The Beijing Branch of China Petroleum & Chemical Corporation (Sinopec) and Beijing Capital Sci-Tech Group Corp. on February 22 agreed to form a joint venture, intending to develop Sinopec's current large gas stations into stations available for both fuel-based and electric vehicles.

China’s wind power sector faces challenges (UPI, 2/22/2010) Amid steep competition and lower profit margins, some industry insiders say China's wind turbine sector grew at the expense of quality.

China Green comes to Texas…and other green issues (The Energy Collective, 2/22/2010) Will U.S. power consumers ever rely on Chinese green power for their electricity? This notion, that just a few years ago seemed far fetched, will likely become a reality. On Tuesday, Chinese wind turbine maker A-Power Energy Generation Systems received Chinese regulatory approval to proceed with a 600 megawatts, $1.5 billion wind farm to be constructed in Texas. The greenlight by the Chinese National Development and Reform Commission is a crucial hurdle to pass and will allow the project developers to, among other things, start approaching banks for financing.

GOVERNMENT

UN warns India, China over e-waste management (Breaking News Online, 2/25/2010) The UN Environment Programme (UNEP) has warned India and China over the e-waste management, and said they could face disaster in future, if appropriate action is not taken immediately.

China to release pollution-fighting fish in lake (AFP, 2/24/2010) Authorities in eastern China have said they will release 20 million algae-eating fish into one of the nation's most scenic lakes that has been ravaged by pollution.

Water project leads to mass relocation (Xinhua, 2/24/2010) The mass relocation of residents affected by China's giant South-to-North Water Diversion (SNWD) project will accelerte this year after years of waiting.

China may take three years to allow sales of gene-modified corn (Business Week, 2/24/2010) China, the world’s biggest grain producer, may take at least three years before gene-modified corn can be grown commercially, according to a state scientist who participated in the research.

U.S. China at odds over climate talks in 2010 (Reuters, 2/24/2010) The United States is at odds with China and other developing nations by favoring a Copenhagen climate accord as the blueprint in 2010 for a stronger deal to fight global warming, documents showed on Wednesday.

China’s Dubai-on-the-Yangtze (Sydney Morning Herald, 2/23/2010) The township of Huaxi in the Yangtze River Delta is a proud symbol of how Chinese communists embraced capitalism to lift 300 million people out of poverty during the past three decades.

China’s soil deterioration may become growing food crisis, adviser claims (Guardian, 2/23/2010) The quality of China's overworked, polluted and artificially fertilised soil needs to be protected or the country could struggle to grow enough crops for the 300 million to 400 million people who will move from the countryside to the city over the next 30 years, a senior government adviser warned today.

China maps 70,000 villages, townships in 2009 (CCTV, 2/19/2010) Chinese mapping authorities had worked out about 70,000 topographic charts and image graphics for the rural areas in the past year.


Weather rockets curb forest fire amid southwest China drought
(People’s Daily, 2/19/2010) Southwest China's Yunnan Province launched 1,555 weather rockets Wednesday and Thursday to curb the risk of forest fire amid the worst drought in 60 years, said provincial meteorological authorities.

China’s H1N1 death toll 160 times higher than official figure (Epoch Times, 2/18/2010) Soon after the release of its investigation report of the H1N1 epidemic in Guangzhou, Southern China’s capital city, H1N1China.orgreleased another survey report of the epidemic throughout China, which indicates that the Chinese communist regime is covering-up the epidemic.

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