Stratfor gives us the good news: Red China Goes Green

Summary: A key piece of the doomsters’ “world ending” story is that the leaders of China are fools, not seeing or acting to address their economic problems — and especially the pollution produced by their decades of rapid growth. As this report by Stratfor shows, they’re not fools — and they are taking bold steps to fix their ecology. (First of two posts today.)Stratfor

Red China Goes Green

Stratfor, 17 March 2017.

Forecast

  • Because stricter environmental policies align with its strategic goals, Beijing may be able to accelerate the pace of its environmental reforms.
  • Enforcing environmental policies across the country’s diverse regions, however, will continue to pose a challenge for Beijing as each province and municipality weighs the risks and rewards of compliance.
  • The central government will use its growing role in international climate change policy and renewable technology to reinforce its position as a world leader.

Analysis

China’s economic growth over the past four decades has been staggering. The environmental damage it has caused is no less impressive.

China is dealing with widespread pollution problems, from thick smog in the northeast to contaminated water and soil throughout the country. But now a combination of domestic pressures and geopolitical strategy has put environmental issues at the top of the Chinese government’s priorities. In the past three years, and particularly since the release of the 13th Five Year Plan in 2016, Beijing has started rolling out stricter environmental policies. The transition is hardly surprising, following decades of rapid industrialization and coinciding with the emergence of a new middle class and a shift in the Chinese economy. It will, however, be challenging. The country’s vast territory and regional diversity make enforcing national laws at the local level an uphill battle. Even so, the strategic gains that stricter environmental policies promise — both domestically and internationally — could help Beijing speed the process along.

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Update: only 16 months until the destruction of America by pollution!

Summary: We can learn much about modern America by looking at past predictions. Unlike today’s news, we not only can assess their accuracy, but also their reasonableness as forecasts when they were made. We now have 50+ years of predictions from Left and Right, mostly designed to frighten us into obedience. Let’s remember and learn from them. This post looks at a small but entertaining one, typical of its time, about the terrifying America of 2017.

“Priorities must be established, or this might be the end for Earth as we know it.”
— Memo to the President by media magnate Glenn Howard (played by Gene Barry) in “LA 2017”.

"Los Angelese: AD 2017" by Philip Wylie
Available from Amazon.

 

Some things never change. That’s a lesson from watching the TV show “L.A. 2017”. Directed by the 24-year old Steven Spielberg, it aired on 15 January 1971 as an episode of The Name of the Game. It described a horrific world 46 years in the future (2017), after pollution had destroyed the Earth’s ecology and forced the remnants of humanity to live underground.

In this version of 2017, Los Angeles has one cow; its milk is a delicacy for the rich. For more about the plot see this.

It was written by Philip Wylie, a science fiction writer with a successful specialty in doomster stories about nuclear war and ecological doom. He novelized it as Los Angeles: A.D. 2017. See a review here.

While Hollywood worked to terrify the public into action — it was aired before the second anniversary of Earth Day — real policy experts had been working for decades to end the polluting of America. The key regulations had already been enacted when “LA 2017” was first broadcast, and many more have been enacted since then.

The Federal Water Pollution Control Act of 1948 began the long process of cleaning America’s waters, with major amendments enacted in 1961, 1966, 1970, 1972 (a complete revision), 1977, and 1987. The Clean Air Acts of 1955, 1963, 1967, and 1970 had broken the back of that problem; subsequent amendments in 1977 and 1990 — and Obama’s proposals — have continued this progress. The Environmental Protection Agency opened shop on 2 December 1970, and has accomplished great things in its brief history.

The improvement in America’s environment since 1960 is amazing, a public policy accomplishment we can take pride in — and a rebuttal to those who disregard American history to claim that government seldom (or never) does anything good at home.

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Good news: air quality in the US has improved!

Summary:  This post will get little traffic, like most that give good news.  “If it bleeds, it leads.”  Articles about the last faux-doomster news get traffic, re-enforcing the widespread belief that the ecology of the USA slowly (or rapidly) rolls down to Hell.  How sad.

Althought a disappointing for “the environment is going to hell” greens, the rest of us can rejoice in this good news. 

Contents

  1. Air quality
  2. It’s not just air quality that’s improving
  3. Intensive propaganda convinces many people that the US environment grows worse
  4. Foolish quotes by greens predicting doom

(1)  Air Quality

 This picture tells the tale, from Mark Perry (Prof Economics, U Michigan), at his blog Carpe Diem.

The longer term term picture shows the progress since the first Earth Day in 1970, esp impressive considering the impressive growth in GDP since then.  And the growth of energy consumption and population — both of which the doomsters of 1970 said were utterly incompatible with reduced pollution.  From “Our Nation’s Air – Status and Trends through 2008“, EPA, February 2010.  This report is a must-read re-education for green doomsters (but few will, of course).

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