Thursday, February 19, 2009

China hopes to cut water consumption 60 percent

Under pressure from the worst drought in half a century, China is talking tough on water conservation. How desperate is China when it comes to water? They fire rockets with "cloud-seeding chemicals" into the sky. What next rain dances? Water witches?

Well, instead of such supply-side solutions, China's talking smart. They want to cut demand. The goal, according to water resources minister is to "cut the amount of water needed to produce each dollar of GDP by 60% by 2020." (
New Scientist)

Again, smart talk. But what are they actually going to do about it? And are they willing to stall growth to make it happen?

Prime factors in China's water crunch are inefficient irrigation systems, growing demand for meat (
which takes a lot of water to produce) and water pollution (some water is so polluted, conventional treatment can't purify it enough for consumption).

Oh, then there's the drought, which is
probably linked to global warming. And oh, China is responsible for more CO2 emissions (everyone's favorite greenhouse gas) than any other country.

(Image of "farming terraces on the road between Jinhong and Kunming in Yunnan, China by
vitafluida via Flickr)

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I started pound360 to channel my obsession with vitamins, running and the five senses. Eventually, I got bored focusing on all that stuff, so I came back from a one month hiatus in May of 2007 (one year after launching Pound360) and broadened my mumblings here to include all science.