Friday, February 01, 2008

China bites back

Regular readers will know that a particular bugbear of mine is people pointing the finger at China over climate change when:

a. it is no surprise that they should have the highest emissions of any country - they've got a quarter of the world's population!

b. much of their economic boom is because we've outsourced our manufacturing industry to them to exploit cheap labour costs.

There's a great article in the Grauniad about the ordinary Chinese person's view on this, entitled: 'You buy our cheap goods. Don't blame us'. Couldn't put it better myself.

While China, like any developing country, has its issues (regulation of the treatment of our waste being one - our waste - see the connection again?) and I'm the first to condemn its human rights record, there are glimmers of hope that it will not fulfil the eco-bogey-man role written for it. It is certainly further along the eco-town route than we are (using British talent which is obviously wasted here) and when I took the train to Beijing I saw more domestic solar hot water systems than I ever have before and since.


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