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China asks West to come up with tech solutions

December 2, 2008

China has said that it will cut its air pollution by 10% of 2005 figures by 2010, but said that rich countries had an obligation to provide technological solutions to help developing countries cut their greenhouse gas emissions.

But technological solutions already exist – including building highly efficient ‘clean’ power stations, installing carbon capture and storage equipment and running clean transport (here’s a nice feature on electric cars). China is the world’s largest carbon emitter and its emissions are projected to skyrocket in a way that makes the hockey stick curve look decidedly limp. What is needed is financial assistance and stringent carbon targets so that China and other industrializing nations can put them in place. We don’t have time for China to develop its economy in the dirty way of 19th-century Europe. Developing nations must leapfrog the West’s mistakes and build a clean economy. Who knows, one day, perhaps traders will go East for fuel cells as well as spices…

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