How China Holds The Environment In The Palm Of Its Hand

RecyclingPhoto: timtak

It is becoming increasingly apparent that planet Earth is experiencing continual and rapid changes, as we progress through the 21st century. The idea of carbon offsetting may be the most efficient approach to reversal, but may not be the most effective. Inputs and outputs can be generally calculated in discreet numbers, but political and economic barriers are truly the controlling issue.

The “race to the bottom” that has fueled the industrial growth of the Third World is clearly problematic for the effectiveness of carbon footprint offsetting. The leader in this corporate patterned migration to slavery-styled production economies is clearly the nation of China. The deforestation occurring in Brazil is also serving to complicate the issue, as the amount of oxygen that is being depleted is running in the background and not as easily calculated. Actually, it is rarely included as a factor in consideration of atmospheric figures.

Electronics factory workersPhoto: jurvetson

The problem with China is one of oversight and sheer aggregate population. Many companies that historically have invested in the United States economy are investing in China. China’s trade status as Most Favored Nation is being abused systematically and the rest of the world is powerless to stop it. The Chinese government has shown no interest in curbing their world-leading economic growth.

A large sector of corporate America is likewise not interested in alteration of this international scheme. Many are showing record profits, while continuing their investment into exploitable economies. In American jurisdictions, it would be possible to legislate reasonable adherence to the theory and process, but the agreements now are overtly voluntary.

Another concern with China is their national population. It is estimated that they have over 200 million men alone who are of military conscription age, if that were necessary for national policy. They are an all volunteer military, but the population figures are indicative of the amount of manpower at their disposal to expand economic growth. Add to this the fact that they are just beginning their industrial transfer from an agrarian society, complete with their own population explosion of “baby boomers” because of agrarian labor needs, and you can see the scope of the problem.

The history of China’s heavy-handed mass population control policies, which could include utilizing the military in industry as well as population conformity, also serves as an indication of the back-up power that they have in terms of being able to control the imbalance. The result is that any attempt that the rest of the world implements in an attempt to reverse the problem of atmospheric carbon overload is weak, at best.

Until the United States replaces this condition with a mirrored trading policy, the world is merely at the mercy of Chinese economic growth. Further complicating the matter is the US national debt. As long as China is buying the major part of that debt (around 30%), effectively purchasing American dollars, the United States will be in a compromised position to alleviate the voluntary-status that is now the rule of carbon footprint offsetting.