Environmental Consequences Chinas environmental problems are among the most severe of any major country and are getting worse: Air pollution Land Degradation – Cropland losses – Desertification – Disappearing wetlands – Grassland degradation – Soil erosion – Overgrazing – Salinization Water pollution and shortage – Freshwater – Groundwater depletion – Oceans Loss of biodiversity – increase in invasive species
Unevenly distributed North only 1/3 of South 100 cities suffer from severe shortages, halting industrial production. 300 cities out of Chinas 617 Cities suffer from shortage 2/3 from groundwater mining – salt water intrusion in coastal areas and subsidence in some cities World’s worst cessation of river flows. Yellow River stopped flowing during 20 of the years 1972-1997 Number of days without flow up from 90 in 1980 to 230 in 1997
Water Shortage Hard to meet the water needs of the rising population, especially when such large numbers of people are concentrated in the cities, further straining water supplies. “This water shortage prevents the river from flushing its heavy load of pollutants into the Yellow Sea. Mainland China has only a per-capita share of 2700 cubic meters per annum, ¼ of the world's average water supply per person 2/3 of China's 660 largest cities face water deficits. –Beijing is among the cities most affected.
Water Shortage Competition rural vs urban intensifying: Residential use is rising from 31 to 134 bil. tons from 1995 to 2003 Industrial use rising from 52 to 269 bil. Ton Farmers can not compete economically 1000 ton of water in agriculture = $200 In industry it = $14,000 of profit. Virtual water? The farmer holds a small irrigator used to lift water out of a canal using small buckets
China’s Water Pollution Water Pollution Has Become China’s Most Urgent Environmental Problem Today At least 300 million people in China do not have access to safe drinking water As much as 70% of China’s lakes, rivers, and streams are affected by water pollution Although legislation is in place China’s government does not strictly enforce. Riverside chemical and power plants, along with paper, textile, and food production facilities, are a leading source of pollution of China's rivers and lakes
Water Pollution Due to China’s population being over one billion, their water supply is slowly disappearing. Their water is also being contaminated by the industrial growth with benzene which causes cancer. For example, on November 24, 2005, there was an explosion at a chemical plant in northeastern China. It spilled 100 tons of benzene in the Songhua River. Due to this, the city of Harbin was forced to shut its water supply to 3.8 million people for a week.
Water Pollution: Waste Water Waste water is when raw sewage is dumped into the rivers and carries water-borne diseases like typhoid, cholera, dysentery and hepatitis This leads to health epidemics and deaths It also contaminates farmland due to irrgation.
Water Pollution Arsenic contaminated water Arsenic contaminated water Skeletal fluorosis Second most severe env. health problem Sewage, agricultural and industrial waste contaminates water supplies and cause many deceases Much surface and groundwater is declared heavily polluted by heavy metals incl. lead, mercury, cadmium, arsenic and fluorides. China’s per capita water availability only ¼ of world average - shortage Second most severe env. health problem Sewage, agricultural and industrial waste contaminates water supplies and cause many deceases Much surface and groundwater is declared heavily polluted by heavy metals incl. lead, mercury, cadmium, arsenic and fluorides. China’s per capita water availability only ¼ of world average - shortage
Water Pollution Nearly 90% of China's cities and 75% of its lakes are impacted by water pollution. Coastal waters suffer from urban run-off, red tides, and biodiversity loss. "Surface water pollution across the country is still relatively grave … 59.9 percent of rivers were grade 3 or better, 23.7 percent of rivers were grade 4 or 5 and 16.4 percent failed to meet any grade standard.” (China State of the Environment 2010)
Water Pollution At the same time, the quantity of wastewater dumped into the river from non-industry sources has increased, resulting in ever- deteriorating conditions” (Karasov 2002). Some areas are categorized as not even fit to be touched by people (Karasov 2002).
Water Pollution More than 700 mio people consume drinking water contaminated with levels of animal and human excreta that exceed maximum permissible levels by as much as 86% in rural areas and 28% in urban areas By 1996 only 5% of industrial and 17% of domestic waste received any treatment before being discharged in rivers, lakes, oceans etc. However these percentages are increasing Also dramatic increase in fresh water aquaculture
Water Pollution Substances such as cadmium, lead, DDT, coliform bacteria, and arsenic have been found in the rivers (Some Polluted Outlets… 2004). “The decline in water conditions across China is directly related to China's population growth, strong economic growth, and uncontrolled urbanization and semi-urbanization” (Karasov 2002). In 1996, governmental officials in the country reported that 40% of the sections of the Huang and Yangtze rivers near major cities did not even fulfill the minimum standards of water quality (Environmental Health Perspectives 2002).
Pollution has often led to the temporary shut down of tap water in areas along China’s rivers. Hundreds of thousands of farmers must use filthy water for drinking and irrigation. The economies of entire farming and fishing villages have been destroyed because of pollution. 1/3 of all fish species in the Yellow River have become extinct because of pollution and various other factors. China’s Water Pollution
Migrant worker, shoveling extremely polluted water and mud from a nearly dried river. (Johnson,Tim. China's Environmental Woes are so Large They've Begun to Generate Social Instability. http://earthhopenetwork.net/economic_boom_batters_chinas_climate.htm) http://earthhopenetwork.net/economic_boom_batters_chinas_climate.htm
Cancer mortality from water pollution - TVE Increase in cancer mortality over time in control area, polluted and most polluted townships Show that increased pollution results in increased mortality steady increase in cancer mortality over time in polluted areas Increase in cancer mortality over time in control area, polluted and most polluted townships Show that increased pollution results in increased mortality steady increase in cancer mortality over time in polluted areas Liver and stomach cancer deaths doubled since the 1970s. China has Highest liver cancer dead rate in the world Liver and stomach cancer deaths doubled since the 1970s. China has Highest liver cancer dead rate in the world
Cancer mortality and birth defects – changes to agriculture Impact of new practice of using industrial wastewater for irrigation 70 km long canal build in 1960, daily received 400,000 m 3 of untreated wastewater from coalmines and petrochemical, power and chemical plants – increasing cancer mortality and birth defect Impact of new practice of using industrial wastewater for irrigation 70 km long canal build in 1960, daily received 400,000 m 3 of untreated wastewater from coalmines and petrochemical, power and chemical plants – increasing cancer mortality and birth defect
Air Pollutants 16 of the world's 20 most polluted cities are in China. China is the world’s leading source of respiratory and cardiovascular disease and acid rain – 25.5 million tons each year Many different pollutants in the air – sulfur dioxide Iron, steel and chemical factories spew sot, fly ash and into the air – Black carbon produced by cars, stoves, factories and crop burning – Desert dust from sand and dust storms in the Gobi Desert – Mercury
Air Pollution Air pollution is mostly human made As many as five million deaths are caused by air pollution every year in India Cities in India, such as Bombay and Calcutta, are below safety limits for pollutants Much of India’s pollution come from motor vehicles
Air pollution Most severe enviormental health problem 3/4 city dwellers live below Chinas air-quality standards Acid rain fell on a quarter of cities for more than 60% of rainy days Most severe enviormental health problem 3/4 city dwellers live below Chinas air-quality standards Acid rain fell on a quarter of cities for more than 60% of rainy days
Air Pollution "Overall urban air quality is good with relatively heavy pollution in some cities. Among 471 cities, 3.6 percent met grade 1 air quality standard, 79.2 percent met grade 2, 15.5 percent met grade 3 and 1.7 percent failed to met grade 3." Interpretation: Almost one in five cities still fails to meet the low passing grade set by the government on an annual basis. Photograph: Guang Niu/Getty Images
Air Pollution Causes Fossil fuels: –Coal For industry and heating homes. Coal is cheap but pollutes the air. –Factories –Vehicles
Coal and Air Pollution Coal is the number one source of air pollution in China China gets 80% of its electricity and 70% of its total power from coal Around 6 million tons of coal is burned everyday to power factories, heat homes, cook meals
Coal 70% of energy is from coal, used for electricity and forging steel. Most homes and businesses use coal. Coal is cheap and extremely dirty, releasing sulfur and other chemicals when burned. Some businesses in big cities have switched over to fossil fuels, but most still rely heavily on coal. Previously the government had claimed that the cost of solving the problem by building cleaner factories was too high. Governmental leaders are starting to order businesses to clean up, and some of the worst polluting factories to shut-down.
CO 2 Emission CO 2 emission, largely a by-product of energy production and use Low and middle income countries have seen a relatively much higher increase in CO 2 emission CO 2 emission, largely a by-product of energy production and use Low and middle income countries have seen a relatively much higher increase in CO 2 emission
Car Emissions Huge shift recently towards driving cars and in some areas of the cities, bicycles are no longer allowed (Global Refining 2004). Most cars built by foreign companies, because leaders wanted foreign investors. Cars sold in China have much older equipment to control emissions than cars sold in Europe or the United States Emissions standards in China are much lower than in Europe and the U.S. Statistics in this slide are from China Revs Up 2004 unless otherwise labeled.
Lack of Industrial Controls Great economic development during the 1980s led to increased pollution. Demand has risen over time in China and industries have met this with increased output They have not added any controls to the air released from smokestacks, though. By 2020, China’s carbon dioxide emissions will surpass the U.S., and the United States and China “would contribute more to global warming than all other nations combined.” Statistics in this slide are from China Revs Up 2004 unless otherwise labeled.
Impacts: Air Pollution Astronauts can see the smog in China from space Smog is so bad in Beijing and Shanghai that the airports are often shut down due to poor visibility – This just happened on January 29, 2013 – In January 2013, more than 150 flights to and from Beijing were canceled due to smog Highways have been closed due to smog The air quality in Beijing is 16 times worse than NYC Sometimes you cannot see the building a few blocks away A blue sky is rare In Shanghai, you often cannot see the street from the 5 th floor window
A picture of downtown Hangzhou, China hazy with smog (Skiba, Tom. Smog in downtown Hangzhou China, http://cai.blogware.com/blog/Photos/China/_archives/2005/4/27/625887.htm) http://cai.blogware.com/blog/Photos/China/_archives/2005/4/27/625887.htm
Impacts: Air Pollution Nearly 30% of respiratory disease in China is attributed to air pollution. 500 major cities in China exceed safe air quality levels. Acid rain affects more than 30% of the country. Over 75% of China’s SO 2 pollution, acid rain, and CO 2 emissions come from coal combustion.
Air Pollution In Nov 2010, China’s EPA published a report that said 1/3 of 113 cities had failed to meet the national air standards According to the Chinese government, 1/5 of China’s urban population breathe heavily polluted air Many places smell like high-sulfur coal and leaded gasoline
China has the most deaths from urban air pollution in the world. (Worldwatch Institute. Coal, China, and India: A Deadly Combination for Air Pollution?, http://www.worldwatch.org/features/vsow/2005/12/14) http://www.worldwatch.org/features/vsow/2005/12/14
Effects of Air Pollution Evan Osnos lived in Beijing and in The New Yorker he wrote, – “After four years in Beijing, I have learned how to gauge the pollution before I open the curtains; by dawn on the smoggiest days, the lungs ache. “ The US Embassy in Beijing installed an air monitor on its roof and every hour on Twitter it posts the score from 1 being the cleanest to 500 the dirtiest It is normally around 500 and public health notices are constantly posted that you should avoid all physical activity outside. The only time any American city ever reached 300 was in the midst of a forest fire
Effects of Air Pollution Up to 656,000 premature deaths each year – China has the world’s highest number of deaths attributed to air pollution – In 2007, the WHO estimated that 656,000 Chinese died prematurely due to indoor and outdoor air pollution Lung cancer is the number one cause of death in China – it causes premature babies, low-birth weight babies, and depresses lung functions in healthy people Crop damage – Reduced crop production because the smog blocks sunlight over 2/3 of eastern China where rice and wheat are harvested Climate change
Different Air Pollution Different colored smog – Gray: comes from iron deposits blown from steel mills – White: comes from the chemical factories – Black: comes form the coal mines and plants
Impact: The Asian Brown Cloud The Asian Brown cloud is a brown blanket of smog that affects all nations of Asia India, China, Japan, Thailand, etc. It can alter the patterns of the Monsoons, reduce photosynthesis, increase respiratory problems, and reduce solar radiation. Toxic waste, motor vehicles, cooking fuels, and forest fires contribute to this air pollution
Satellite pictures over much of Asia and the Indian Ocean show an enormous brown stain hanging in the air
Globalization & Diversity: Rowntree, Lewis, Price, Wyckoff 54 Deforestation Forests and Deforestation Little conservation of forests in China; much more in Japan Reforestation programs have been unsuccessful Substantial forests found in the far north and along Tibetan border China may need to import wood products for development
Deforestation China’s natural forests have been declining over the last 50 years Deserts are forming quickly due to this A desert in China will bury an area the size of New Jersey every five years Since 1949, the area that was covered by trees in China was about 14.4 million Mha A few years ago, the forested area in China was only.7 Mha Lumber production has grown to accommodate the demands for the growing population to make furniture Despite a logging ban passed in 1999, the damage has already been done China suffers from soil erosion and flooding
Impacts: 2/3 of China’s Forests Lost, Leading to Floods and Deserts
This is common in China During 2003, China’s EPA reported that the Gobi Desert had grown by 52, 400 km About 900 square miles of land each year become desert in China This is due to drought, overgrazing, incorrect use of ground water, and logging Due to this, dust storms and sandstorms are more common Expanding deserts cause China to lose about 1 million acres of land each year
Desertification Every time the desert grows by 2,500 km, China loses about 2 to 3 billion dollars annually In 2001, a new law was passed to try to control desertification – It asked that land occupants plant trees in areas where deforestation had already occurred And this has begun to slowly help
Over grazing- increase in number of goat, sheep and cattle Increasing desertification, the Gobi desert expanded by 52,400 km 2 from 1994 to 1999 Winter storms create enormous dust storms affecting Korea and Japan Increasing desertification, the Gobi desert expanded by 52,400 km 2 from 1994 to 1999 Winter storms create enormous dust storms affecting Korea and Japan
Soil Erosion Affects 19% of land As a result of human activity, such as – Deforestation for agriculture and logging – Destruction of vegetation (grassland) – Cultivation on steep slopes – Drying out of wetlands for agriculture and city develop Consequences Deposition of sediment in the river bed causing more frequent flooding leading to the deposition of coarse sediment particles and secondary alkalization In one area more than doubling the area of eroded land from the 1960s to 80s
Severity of Human Induced Soil Degradation The destruction of agricultural land poses a big problem for China’s food security The destruction of agricultural land poses a big problem for China’s food security
Bicycles once filled the streets of China (Wayne, J. Pen. Go Go Speed Racer. http://www.evolvingtype.com/disabusing/webpage/ words3.htm) http://www.evolvingtype.com/disabusing/webpage/ words3.htm Cars are now taking over the roads (Engler, Yves & Mugyenyi Bianca. China’s Cars on Road to Ruin. http://www.peopleandplanet.net/doc.php?id=2484)http://www.peopleandplanet.net/doc.php?id=2484
Effects/Impact of All These Environmental Problems on China
Consequences Of Environmental Problems for China’s people Socio-economic losses – $72 mil per year is spend to control just one weed imported from Brazil for pig forage – $250 mil in annual loss arising from factory closure due to shortage of water just in one city – Sand storm damage app $540 mil/year – Acid rain damage to crop and forest $730 mil/year – $6 bil cost of green wall to protect Beijing – $7 bil/year losses due to desertification – $7 bil/year due to losses from other alien species – $27 bil loss due to flood in 1998 – $54 bil/year losses due to water and air pollution
Health cost – 1996 to 2001 spending on public health incr. by 80% – App 300,000 death/year due to air pollution – Lead blood level in cities twice the level considered to be dangerous Natural disasters – AD300 to 1949 dust storms once every 31 years. Since 1990 almost one every year – soil erosion – Drought damage about 160,000 km 2 of cropland every year – double the area in 1950s – Increasing flood frequency Consequences Of Environmental Problems for China’s people
China in the Global Village The shear size of China’s population, its landmass and economy guarantee that its environmental problems will spread to the rest of the world Beneficial and harmful imports – China importing natural gas and oil– reduces environmental damage from the use of coal – Countries transferring pollution-intensive industries to China – using technology often prohibited in the exporting country – China paid to accept toxic trash from developed countries (increased from 1 mio to 11 mio t/p.a. 1990-1997) Exports causing damage at home – Products go abroad but pollution stays at home
China in the Global Village Invasive spices exported (chestnut blight, Dutch elm disease, Asian long- horned beetle) Exports air pollution into the atmosphere Exports deforestation. China’s import of wood has increased 6 fold; mainly from Malaysia, Papa New Guinea and Brazil
A Global Issue Dust and aerial pollutants already impact neighboring countries Leading importer of tropical rainforest timber – a driving force behind tropical deforestation What will happen if China achieves 1 st world standard of living with 1 st world environmental impact per capita