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If Asia Leads on Climate, the World Will Follow

If Asia Leads on Climate, the World Will Follow

John Feffer

China and South Korea could be game changers on climate — and create a more peaceful region in the process.

Here’s a radical idea for China and South Korea: Forget Donald Trump, forget the United States, and forget the Cold War divide in Northeast Asia.
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I’m dismayed by the repeated use of the phrase “sustainable development;” I had thought that everybody but the most incorrigible propagandists had learned by now that the model of infinite growth on a finite planet is UNsustainable.

The rapid transition toward renewable energy is to be encouraged, of course, but finding ways (above all, limiting and eventually reducing global population) to reduce our aggregate need for energy must be part of that transition strategy or it will fail, to the ruin of all.


Here’s where US foreign policy, along with localized assistance by France, Israel and, new to the game but ready to play its population-reduction hand, Saudi Arabia. The millions of reductions that this quartet has contributed, although more than the rest of the world, is only a small number, so far, but we can feel encouraged that The Donald has his eye on increasing that number in the near future. Whether these continuing efforts will result in a healthier population and planet is problematic.

I can’t think of a group that has done more to control its population than China, unless you consider the Shakers. However, they suffer substantially in lack of a young labor market from the extreme measures of their one child policy. You can say that China sets an example in many things, but their culture tend to draw a line at saying that others need to do as they do. China was not even able to extend the one child policy to its minorities.

Population growth drive is deeply entrenched in many religions, in business models, and hidden in movements against LGBT and abortion. I guess anything is possible. But it will be tough. I expect to hear: Lets reduce THEIR population, not ours.

As far as energy goes, China is already doing a huge amount. Electric trains nationwide, electric vehicles for decades. Solar water heaters everywhere, if the sun would just shine more.