Ebel said that shortages of water may now be China’s most pressing resource problem.
“Because you need water for every aspect of life. And if you don’t have it, you’ve got a real issue on your hands.”
Daniela Salaverry, China program associate at Pacific Environment, a nongovernmental organization based in San Francisco, said that China’s dependence on rainfall for hydropower and its willingness to pour huge investments into coal will mean greater problems with pollution in dry years.
China was already having trouble meeting its goals for reducing emissions, Salaverry said.“What’s happening in China right now is that the momentum that’s been pushing them forward—whether it’s GDP growth or industrial development or exporting resources and materials—that demand is continuing to grow.”
Coal will “continue to be China’s go-to [fuel] for energy output,” Salaverry said.