President Obama has in the past couple of years praised China’s “vastly superior” infrastructure and has said the U.S. needs to go “all-in on clean energy” just like the Chi-coms. How’s that working out for China?
When China’s environment ministry told attorney Dong Zhengwei he couldn’t have access to two-year old data about soil pollution because it was a “state secret”, it added to mounting public outrage over the worsening environment.
Microbloggers, state media and even delegates to this week’s session of the National People’s Congress, the largely rubber-stamp parliament, were already critical of the government for poor air and water quality. Now they are also expressing disquiet over the scarcity of information about the environment available to them.
For incoming President Xi Jinping, who formally takes over towards the end of the parliament session, the two-pronged challenge is to find the balance between growth and further degradation of the environment, and also to decide whether to level with citizens just how bad the problem is.
Doug Ross has some photos taken in this “clean energy” wonderland Obama has spoken of and wants to emulate here. Obama’s certainly getting there when it comes to Chinese government-style transparency — I’ll give him that much.
By the way, Obama saying China has gone “all-in” on clean energy is a funnier joke than Joe Biden: