It’s Gettin’ Hot In Here: ‘China Starts Televising The Sunrise On Giant TV Screens Because Beijing Is So Clouded In Smog’
From The Daily Mail:
The smog has become so thick in Beijing that the city’s natural light-starved masses have begun flocking to huge digital commercial television screens across the city to observe virtual sunrises.
The futuristic screens installed in the Chinese capital usually advertize tourist destinations, but as the season’s first wave of extremely dangerous smog hit - residents donned air masks and left their homes to watch the only place where the sun would hail over the horizon that morning.
Serious air pollution plagues most major Chinese cities, where environmental protection has been long sacrificed for the sake of economic development.
Coal burning and car emissions are major sources of pollution. In recent years, China has beefed up regulations and pledged financial resources to fight pollution.
“The perception that fossil fuels are cheap and renewables are expensive is now out of date”, said Michael Liebreich, chief executive of Bloomberg New Energy Finance. “The fact that wind power is now cheaper than coal and gas in a country with some of the world’s best fossil fuel resources shows that clean energy is a game changer which promises to turn the economics of power systems on its head,” he said.
China will proactively introduce a set of new taxation policies designed to preserve the environment, including a tax on carbon dioxide emissions, according to a senior official with the Ministry of Finance (MOF).
China is among the world’s largest emitters of greenhouse gas and has set goals for cutting emissions. The government has vowed to reduce carbon intensity, or the amount of carbon dioxide emitted per unit of economic output, by 40 to 45 percent by 2020 in comparison to 2005 levels.
Check out the rest of the article here.
• ‘China is getting serious about taming coal’ (Grist)
Though many have come to accept the scientific consensus around climate change, political realities still stifle the hope of real climate action. To help address this political impasse, Bill McKibben will share his invaluable experience mobilizing global grassroots activism. He will share stories from the front lines of the climate fight – from every corner of planet, including our own backyard. Of particular interest to Canadian university students, he will address the Keystone XL pipeline and Alberta Tar Sands development. Some stories are hopeful, some are not, but one thing is certain: we finally have a movement, and Bill would like you to be a part of it.
You can read about his UBC talk and visit to Vancouver here.
Lester Brown, President of the Earth Policy Institute, tells Earth Focus that new forces including life style and demographic changes are reducing the use of both coal and oil in the United States. He expects that carbon emissions could decline by as much as 20% in the United States by 2020.