1. Coal Consumption
China is the largest consumer of coal in the world and is about to be the largest user of coal-derived energy, generating an astounding 1.95 trillion kilowatt-hours per year or 68% of its energy from coal (Nation Master, 2008). China is also the largest coal producer in the world and Northern China, especially the Shanxi Province which contains most of China’s coal (Energy Information Adminstration, 2005).
According to Greenpeace (2014), coal is the most polluting of all available fossil fuels which suggests that it is the largest single-source of global warming pollution worldwide. To illustrate its impact, one-third of all CO2 emissions are generated from the burning of coal. China as mentioned previously, is the world’s largest consumption and producer of coal which speaks volume for itself. In addition to this, there are coal mine fires of which are generated by industrial accidents and by local miners who want to generate heat. Such coal mine fires also translate and collectively contribute to carbon dioxide emissions every year which are often not reported (Mines and Communities Website, 2003). Henceforth, China being the world’s biggest producer and consumer of coal indeed does contribute greatly to global warming.
Overpopulation is often seen as the cause of China’s environmental problems especially its affect on global warming. Proponents of this theory argue that China is unable to cope with the rapid growth in the distribution of resources to its population. This coupled with recent estimates about the continued growth of the nation create alarming forecasts for the resilience and the sustainability of China’s environment (Solow, 1991). Furthermore, China has the largest population in the world which reinforces the fact that the population requires a colossal amount of energy. In turn, this leads to other energy emissions such as carbon monoxide emission from cars, and gas emissions from factories.
Such problems are also exacerbated when the rising population requires a higher amount of resources, specially energy sources in order to cope with the demands. Henceforth, China’s huge population is indirectly another factor which contributes to global warming.
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