Many people maintain that China will continue growing at the incredible rate that it has been for the last twenty years. Since the early 1990’s China’s GDP growth has averaged 8.9% per year. This has led many people to believe China can continue this great growth ad infinitum. It does have a huge, relatively cheap labor force to draw from. More practical people realize that just can’t be true. I am attempting to write a series of articles that will cover some of the problems China is encountering and is sure to encounter in the future in its attempt to continue this rapid growth.
One of these problems is the ever increasing amount of smog China is seeing in and around its big cities. The whole world saw how much smog there was at the Olympic Games in Beijing. That was after the Chinese had curbed the smog output of many factories specifically for the Olympic Games. In fact some factories were closed a month prior to the games to give the air a chance to clear. Auto use was curbed too. When you further consider that Beijing is not even on the list of China’s most highly polluted cities, you can begin to get an idea of how serious China’s pollution problem is.
The following table compares the pollution level of China’s most polluted cities to their counterparts in the US.