China and India: The Tipping Point in Climate Change

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China and India: The Tipping Point in Climate Change

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Green Builder Media CEO, Sara Gutterman

Wednesday, August 20, 2014 - 7:00am

CAMPAIGN: Ethical and Sustainable Living

CONTENT: Blog

Last week, I attended a meeting with President Obama, during which he addressed climate change and the urgent need to develop and implement sustainable solutions. He listed the steps that his administration has taken to move the United States towards a greener, cleaner future—including tighter EPA regulations on power plant carbon emissions, ratcheted fuel efficiency standards, and stricter requirements for energy efficiency in buildings. Then, he emphasized the fate-determining elephant in the room: unless China and India get aggressive about climate action soon, nothing that America does really matters.

By 2050, the world’s energy consumption is projected to increase by over 50%, driven primarily by growth and increasing prosperity and China and India. Together, the Dragon and Elephant are projected to account for approximately half of the world’s energy consumption by 2040 (China is currently adding 100 GW of new energy infrastructure each year, the equivalent of the UK’s total annual energy usage.)

While the US aspires to be the world leader in sustainability, our flaccid action has caused us to fall behind in the race to a cleaner economy, enabling other countries to vie for the pole position. And, interestingly, an unexpected groundswell is occurring in China and India that is propelling both countries forward towards achieving significant sustainability goals.

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Keywords: Environment | China | Energy | Environment | President Obama | Prime Minister Narenda Modi | epa regulation

CAMPAIGN: Ethical and Sustainable Living

CONTENT: Blog

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