China’s Airport Binge is Bad Environmental News
The country will
airports will create a huge amount of pollution.
Diao Yonghai, Deputy Director of Aviation for the Civil Aviation Administration
of China, attributed the growth to rising international trade and tourism and
China’s per capita GDP. He called it an “unprecedented opportunity” to bolster
the country’s airport infrastructure.
8.6 million tons. The government anticipates air traffic to exceed 540 million
passengers by 2010 and air cargo to hit 12.8 million tons.
rise in pollution.
who’s talking, that will grow to between 5% (
but clean. Not only are they the daily departure and arrival points for untold
numbers of aircraft,
largest airports in the US are located in areas that didn’t meet minimum air quality
standards in 2003. And keep in mind that these numbers are from airports in a
country that’s making at least cursory efforts toward cleaning up its act. In
2007, for example, Dallas-Fort Worth Airport was
60 of the country’s airports are at or near capacity, and according to
2010 (though an aviation administration official concedes the tanking global economy
could slow things down). China hasn’t signed onto the Kyoto Protocol, so there’s
nothing anyone can do to require that China minimize the environmental impact
of all those airports.
the difficulty in finding a balance between sustainability and economic growth.
A more measured, eco-conscious approach makes sense from an environmental standpoint,
but China needs more of everything if it’s to sustain its move into the economic
big leagues. For now, that’s the country’s priority.