Low-lying coastal city Shanghai literally means “above the sea.” Yet Chinese officials deny it is most prone to flooding.
The city of 20 million has spent billions of dollars on flood-reinforcement. It’s a low-lying coastal city and is one of the most threatened cities in the world to sea level rise from climate change. Now, a new study shows that the city is more vulnerable than ever. Like clockwork, Chinese officials quickly disavowed the report’s findings, stating that the report did not include new infrastructure investments. While China continues its public denial, they’re spending billions more in infrastructure improvements to help keep the sea at bay.
The coldest winter in decades is causing blizzards in northern China and threatens electric power supplies in the south where the government is not used to dealing with such freezing temperatures, China media said Wednesday.
About 180,000 cattle have died in the north while hundreds of emergency shelters have opened in southern China to help people who do not have adequate housing or heat to survive the below-average cold.
The U.S. Embassy in Iceland might be 70 people. Europe’s largest presence is France, with only a 20 person embassy. Why would China need one with 500 people?
The answer? Natural resources. Aluminum, rare earth metals, oil, gas, copper, gold, and possibly diamonds are irresistible wealth opportunities in the Arctic region. Melting ice will give way to new mega-mining operations like never seen before.
Then Mr. Degeorges answered his own question about China’s need — or desire — for such a large embassy in Reykjavik: “It gives you the long-term perspective that you can expect in Iceland.”
Everyone is jostling for space in the melting Arctic these days, it seems, as my colleague Elisabeth Rosenthal recently reported. That includes China, which has no Arctic territory.
Yet as the Arctic ice cap melts, it is revealing riches — principally minerals, including important rare earths, but also water, oil and gas. Greenland potentially has up to 10 percent of the world’s freshwater reserves, Mr. Degeorges said.