Within this issue, we will be discussing ‘Climate change.’ This is a fantastic topic to debate on, as it has so many aspects to it. In this essay, we will be talking about the role of accountability within countries that produce large amounts of pollution. Today, we will be using Pakistan and China as examples. We will also be considering;
- Polluted versus Polluting.
- The role of the government within these countries
- One of the many solutions to this; policing polluting countries.
- The historical reparations of the countries which should, perhaps, be contemplated.
- Initiating a carbon tax (either international or only for polluting countries.)
- A summary.
Throughout this essay, there may be some phrases or words that you may question;
-Renewable= An item that can be reused as there may be a lot of it supplied.
-Regulation= force of law.
-Counter-act= Something attempting to even out something else.
-EU- The European Union. (The unity of all European countries)
Polluting versus Polluted; To begin with, there is a major difference between polluting and polluted. When a country is polluted, it has already caused damage to, both, the environment and itself. However, a solution may come later, but if the country has high amounts of pollution, it would be difficult to change it. On the other hand, polluting means adding more pollution to somewhere, either the environment or itself. If a country is polluting somewhere, it is continuing to add fossil fuels and other harmful additions to the planet. An example of a polluting country is China, whereas a polluted country is Pakistan.
Government of China; Secondly, many people argue that the country depends on the government/ monarchy to make the decisions. Many critics also suggest that if the government implements new rules and regulations, then the country may be inspired to change. A study suggests that the government of China has attempted to acknowledge the fact that climate change is having a major effect on our planet. In 2017, a survey took place and at least 90% of the population said that ‘climate change is happening’ and 66% of people believed that it is ‘caused by human activities.’ (Statistics from https://www.chinadialogue.net/article/show/single/en/10831-Does-the-Chinese-public-care-about-climate-change-) Within China, there have been many new laws that have been put in place in order to lower emission gases and promote a carbon-free lifestyle. Most of the Chinese public want to change their lifestyles to help the environment, even if it is a small change. (E.g. using public transport and using solar power.) Due to the government and their own will, they would also pay for climate-friendly products such as wind- powered electricity (renewable energy), zero-waste products etc. The state council may have inspired people to have a positive mindset, but it may be that they can see the impact climate change has and they want to change. In this situation, the government and the public agree.
Government of Pakistan; The prime minister, furthermore, suggested that he wanted to change the lifestyle of Pakistan. In 2018, Imran Khan said that he would like to plant (at least) ‘10 billon trees.’ His main aim was to counter-act the amount of fossil fuel emissions that are currently polluting our air. Another politician suggested that he noticed that Pakistan was facing the impacts of climate change and that they need to make improvement, their main focus. The prime minister and his team want to (also) build water dams and hydraulic powered sources to create energy. If they resorted to solar, wind and water sources; the amount of gas within the atmosphere would decrease, thus making their country less polluted. The public of Pakistan, however, have a different approach. 65% of the public do not understand what climate change is, 11% believe that the media represents climate change quite well. Lastly, 72% of the public have little confidence in the government achieving the things they need to achieve. Many studies suggest that if the prime minister communicated more with his public, they may become more educated and supportive of his expectations. If they know about climate change and they learn the impacts; they may feel inclined to make a difference (which would be better for everyone in Pakistan)
Policing polluting countries; Many critics argue that most of our air quality and our pollution prevention comes from the EU. Throughout countries, there have been many rules that have been put in place (emission zones, etc.) But many sources question, are we tackling the problems within countries, correctly? Should we focus on polluting countries more? The answer to that is perhaps. If we focus on a country which is creating the most pollution but manage to reduce it, it could be beneficial for all. Also, if we attempted to focus on polluting countries more, others may become inspired to change once they see what they can get to.
Initiating a carbon tax; Furthermore, researchers have suggested that it would be better (environmentally) if we put a carbon tax on some of the carbon generating sources. For example, on the Dartford bridge there is a carbon tax for cars which are not electric. If applied the same rules in other cities, it could help. We could also put a carbon tax on some of the items within the local warehouses. For example, if we put a carbon tax on some of the gas sources in our homes. (It would be a small tax, but it may help.) -This also may inspire people to resort to electrical heating.
Historical reparations; Imran Khan, in 2015, critiqued a local government for giving them a small funding for solutions to climate change. He made a speech about industries and factories and how they needed to supply money for Pakistan, after all they were doing for them. (The historical pollution was caused by other nations.) Many studies question if, countries should be compensated for all that they have done (relating to industries and the economy) or if they should be compensated based on their historical background.
Summary; In this essay, we have talked about responsibility with the public and with the government, historical reparations, initiating a carbon tax and policing polluting countries. These (China and Pakistan) are two examples of polluting and polluted countries however there are many more which have an impact too. To conclude, I would like to thank you all for reading and I hope you enjoyed it! Please feel free to leave your comments down below!
Here are the websites I have found my statistics and information from: Please feel free to read these:
https://www.chinadialogue.net/article/show/single/en/10831-Does-the-Chinese-public-care-about-climate-change- https://www.activesustainability.com/environment/top-5-most-polluting-countries/ http://worldpopulationreview.com/countries/most-polluted-countries/ https://www.climatechangenews.com/2018/07/27/imran-khan-promises-greener-future-pakistan/ https://www.bbc.co.uk/climateasia/explore-countries/pakistan https://dearman.co.uk/professional-engineering-policing-pollution/