May 26, 2020

Will China Sacrifice Green Goal for Economy?

Nicholas Institute for Environmental Policy Solutions

China unveiled a 3.6 trillion yuan stimulus package last week aimed at spurring economic growth amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Experts have raised concerns the money could be spent on "dirty" industries and infrastructure projects, a move that could erase years of progress and be a setback for China's climate and emission targets, reports The Straits Times.

Driving significant portions of its infrastructure spending to "power grid expansions and upgrades, efficiency improvements, and renewable energy generation" instead would benefit China environmentally, strategically, and economically in the long term, said Jackson Ewing, a senior fellow at Duke's Nicholas Institute for Environmental Policy Solutions.

"All of these will take political will, even as other concerns loom large," Ewing said.