From Your Study of the Module and the Video Diary, Explain the Reasons for China’s Environmental Problems. Based on the Evidence from the Module Materials and Zhang Zhimin’s Diary, Evaluate the Claim That the Chinese

In this essay I will attempt to explain the reasons for China’s environmental problems and evaluate the claim that the Chinese government and people are tackling their environmental problems.
China, officially known as People's Republic of China is the fourth largest country in the world and has a population of 1.35 billion people (BBC News, 2013). Over the past three decades, China has experienced considerable economic growth and has developed into an “economic superpower” (Fawssett, 2009, p.15).   However, this is the result of enormous environmental deterioration. China has sixteen of the world’s most polluted cities, over 65% of China’s cities have insufficient water and over 50% of the water in China’s seven biggest river basins is undrinkable (The Economist, 2008, p. 21 cited in Fawssett, 2009, p.15).
Environmental problems can be defined as problems caused by environmental changes due to human activities that greatly endanger the wellbeing of humans and the balance of an ecosystem.

China relies heavily on non- renewable fossil fuels as a source of energy for their many factories and power plants with 75% of China’s energy coming from coal combustion. The burning of coal is extremely polluting as it is a main contributor of Carbon Dioxide emissions and causes many environmental problems such as acid rain which falls on a third of China’s territories (Pan, 2007 cited in Fawssett, 2009, p.15), smog and severe global climate change. China has been the largest producer of Carbon Dioxide emissions since 2006 (Fawssett, 2009, p. 45). China’s rapid growth in coal consumption has been brought on by extensive industrial expansion and the needs for this growth to continue (Fawssett, 2009, p. 45). Air pollution is worse in the towns and cities due to the location of many coal burning factories. An increase in air pollution has been linked to long term health concerns for the people in China, for instance premature deaths and lung and heart related diseases (Watts,...