Stepping Lighter? Environmental and Social Impacts of China’s Overseas Oil, Mineral, and Gas Investments
January 13, 2012 // 10:00am — 12:00pm
To get the New Year rolling here at the Wilson Center, we start off with a CEF meeting on Friday January 13th (10:00-12:00) discussing the drivers and ecological impacts of China’s overseas investments in the oil and mining sectors. Our three speakers—Erica Downs (Brookings); Adina Matisoff (Friends of Earth); and Derek Scissors (The Heritage Foundation)—will share case studies and insights into Chinese investments in oil and minerals, as well as trends in China Development Bank loans and the financing of energy projects overseas.
China’s Threatened Waters: Video Series Screening and Discussion on Wetland Destruction and Other Vulnerable Waterways in China
November 07, 2011 // 3:00pm — 5:00pm
As a result of China’s rapid economic growth in recent decades, coupled with climate change, vast swathes of China’s wetlands have now disappeared. These changes are having serious consequences for the millions of people who rely on these sources of water and also severely affecting the flora and fauna of these regions, pushing many to the brink of extinction. Photographer and videographer Sean Gallagher spent 2010 traveling thousands of kilometers across China for the Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting and Asia Society’s China Green, to document the diverse impacts of wetlands disappearance across the breadth of the country. We will screen some of Sean’s wetland videos. Following the screening of the short wetland videos and Sean’s comments, Zhao Zhong will talk about some of the successes and challenges to the campaigns and programs his NGO have conducted in northern China to protect wetlands and rivers from pollution.
September 26, 2011 // 9:00am — 11:00am
The Third Pole – an area of the Himalayas and Tibetan plateau and home to the largest reserve of fresh water outside the Arctic and Antarctic – is a region familiar to both earthquakes and dam projects. This irreconcilable reality is at the center of an emerging debate, raising environmental and security concerns as regional governments scramble for clean energy resources and control over a precious water source.
August 11, 2011 // 10:30am — 11:30am
Come join the Wilson Center's China Environment Forum and Asia Program for a conversation with Taiwan's Minister of Environmental Protection, Dr. Stephen Shu-Hung Shen, to learn about work the EPA and Taiwan have been doing since 2010 to engage regional partners to advance global capacity in the remediation of contaminated sites, e-waste recycling and management, and reduction of air pollution and greenhouse gas emissions from ports.
July 26, 2011 // 9:00am — 11:00am
Dams, dams, and more dams! China is home to roughly half the world's large dams, and hydropower is set to play a key role in helping China meet its 2020 carbon intensity reduction commitments. Dozens of new large hydro projects are underway across the southwestern part of the country, where steep mountains and big rivers mean great hydro potential. Yet many of those projects are in culturally or ecologically sensitive areas that are home to large concentrations of ethnic minorities, and may involve trans-boundary rivers – all of which bring the long-term sustainability of the projects to the fore.
June 23, 2011 // 9:00am — 11:00am
Over the past several years, the Chinese news media has been more active in reporting on lead poisoning cases and cadmium contamination in food. Overall, however, the magnitude of China's toxic pollution problems is not very well understood, which hinders the search for solutions. For example, China uses and releases more mercury than any other country in the world.
June 09, 2011 // 9:00am — 11:00am
Enforcement of environmental laws has long been a major challenge in China, where severe water, air, and soil pollution problems are causing increasing health problems across the country. A new tool that lawyers and NGOs in China have begun to explore is the use of public interest law cases to push for better enforcement of pollution control regulations.
May 24, 2011 // 9:00am — 11:00am
China's status as number one emitter of CO2 is fairly common knowledge, but less heralded in the newspapers or global climate talks is that China's anthropogenic methane emissions are also first in the world. Methane is a greenhouse gas that is 20 times more potent than carbon dioxide. A large percentage of China's anthropogenic methane emissions come from agriculture (manure management); coal mines; landfills; and natural gas and oil systems.
May 16, 2011 // 10:00am — 12:00pm
With an average GDP rate of 10 percent for the past thirty years, China's economic boom has brought millions out of poverty and fueled a rate of urbanization that is faster than any country in human history. Between 1980 and 2008, China's urbanization rate rose from 20 to 44.9 percent, with the current urban population reaching slightly over 600 million. Buildings consume one-quarter of the China's total energy, and this fraction will expand considerably as the government pushes forward policies to urbanize another 350 million over the next twenty years.
May 06, 2011 // 9:00am — 11:00am
China's soaring economy, fueled by an unyielding appetite for coal, is threatened by the country's steadily diminishing freshwater reserves.