Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Warming Wednesdays: a Chinese car share venture

This video is quite fascinating and worth watching. (You can turn off any ad that pops up by clicking the x.) Smart entrepreneurs are looking to meet rising demand for individual autos among China's growing middle class with a sophisticated urban electric vehicle sharing scheme. This extends the principle of bike share programs to cute little smart cars stored in vending machine-like garages.

It all looks like a great idea and might make China's notoriously smog-afflicted cities more liveable.

But such a program won't necessarily do anything about the quantity of invisible carbon pollution that growing Chinese affluence adds to the planet's CO2 load. China currently gets nearly 80 percent of its electricity from coal-fired plants and looks to be still getting 66 percent of a vastly larger quantity in 2040.

Emissions from burning coal are the most significant contributing factor in carbon pollution that is warming the globe. Yet the rest of us can hardly deny over a billion Chinese the conveniences we accept as necessities. That's the global bind.

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