It was shattered. Across rural mountainsides, there are miles and miles of mangled power poles. Forty-six days after the storm, Puerto Rico's embattled utility company is reporting only about 40 percent power generation
HUMACAO, Puerto Rico — Consuelo Burgos and her husband, Luis, have been living without electricity since Maria hit in the outskirts of Morovis. They also had lost power during Hurricane Irma weeks earlier. Their home is still standing, but their son's home next door collapsed.
"It's very hard," she said.
They depend on their son and good Samaritans to bring water and supplies. But like many Puerto Ricans, they insist it could have been much worse.
"Others have lost everything. We were the lucky ones. We'll survive," they say.
On a piece of crumpled paper, Luis has jotted down Dec. 15 — the goal Gov. Ricardo Rosselló has set for restoring power to 95 percent of the island. Luis Burgos is skeptical that it will happen.
"If it does, I'll give him a huge hug," Luis said.
There's no secret behind the deep skepticism: The island's finances are in a shambles. The Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority went bankrupt in July under a crushing $9 billion debt. The publicly funded utility had a long history of maintenance problems and corruption allegations.
So it's no wonder that promises the lights will be switched back on don't inspire confidence.
But several weeks ago, a surprise came to a children's hospital in San Juan, when it got a call from a tech giant with a bright idea.
Juliana Canino Rivera is the administrator at El Hospital del Niño de Puerto Rico, which houses 35 children with disabilities like cerebral palsy.
In the days after the storm, the power was out and fuel for generators was nearly impossible to find.
"It was chaos," Canino said.
As the hospital struggled to keep its backup generators running, it got the call from Tesla, the company that days earlier had engaged in a Twitter conversation with Rosselló about bringing more solar technology to Puerto Rico.
Newly installed solar panels at El Hospital del Nino in San Juan, Puerto Rico. Randy Brown / NBC News
The company's representative said it wanted to make a donation to her hospital — quickly.
"I'll believe it when I see it," Canino said. "When I saw them, I was amazed."
In just eight days, Tesla built more than 700 solar panels in the hospital's parking lot. The company's founder, Elon Musk, calls it the "first of many solar + battery projects going live" on the island.
"After this terrible event happened, after the hurricane, we have to reinvent life as we know it," said Glorimar Andujar, Puerto Rico's secretary of family affairs.
But reinventing life by going solar won't be easy. Even with the island's dire financial situation — it has more than $72 billion in debt, and it filed for what was essentially the largest municipal bankruptcy in U.S. history — there is still sharp opposition to privatizing the electric grid.
Ángel Figueroa Jaramillo is president of UTIER, the electrical and irrigation workers' union. He said that while solar technology should be studied, it would be difficult to implement on a wide scale.
"The energy demand of Puerto Rico is a high-consumption demand — continuous and reliable consumption — especially for the pharmaceutical industry," he said. "The public model will always have better costs than the private model."
But according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, on average, the island's residents use much less energy than is used by consumers in the 50 states. The agency reports that in 2016, 47 percent of Puerto Rico's electricity came from petroleum, 34 percent from natural gas, 17 percent from coal and 2 percent from renewable energy.
For Canino and her children's hospital, solar is a perfect fit.
"Of course it's realistic," she said. "We're a tropical island. We receive sun 365 days a year."
TRUMP ADMINISTRATION RELEASES REPORT FINDING ‘NO CONVINCING ALTERNATIVE EXPLANATION’ FOR CLIMATE CHANGE
The Trump administration released a dire scientific report Friday calling human activity the dominant driver of global warming.
THE WASHINGTON POST — To the surprise of some scientists, the White House did not seek to prevent the release of the government’s National Climate Assessment. The report affirms that climate change is driven almost entirely by human action, warns of potential sea-level rise as high as eight feet by the year 2100, and details climate-related damage across the United States that is already unfolding as a result of 1.8 degrees Fahrenheit of global warming since 1900.
“It is extremely likely that human influence has been the dominant cause of the observed warming since the mid-20th century,” the document reports. “For the warming over the last century, there is no convincing alternative explanation supported by the extent of the observational evidence.”
The report’s release underscores the extent to which the machinery of the federal scientific establishment, operating in multiple agencies across the government, continues to grind on even as top administration officials have minimized or disparaged its findings. Federal scientists have continued to author papers and issue reports on climate change, for example, even as political appointees have altered the wording of news releases or blocked civil servants from speaking about their conclusions in public forums. The climate assessment process is dictated by a 1990 law that Democratic and Republican administrations have followed.
The White House on Friday sought to downplay the significance of the study and its findings.
“The climate has changed and is always changing. As the Climate Science Special Report states, the magnitude of future climate change depends significantly on ‘remaining uncertainty in the sensitivity of Earth’s climate to [greenhouse gas] emissions,'” White House spokesman Raj Shah said in a statement. “In the United States, energy related carbon dioxide emissions have been declining, are expected to remain flat through 2040, and will also continue to decline as a share of world emissions.”
The report comes as Trump and members of his Cabinet are working to promote U.S. fossil-fuel production and repeal several federal rules aimed at curbing the nation’s carbon output, including ones limiting greenhouse-gas emissions from existing power plants, oil and gas operations on federal land and carbon emissions from cars and trucks. Trump has also announced he will exit the Paris climate agreement, under which the United States has pledged to cut its overall greenhouse-gas emissions between 26 percent and 28 percent compared with 2005 levels by 2025.
Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt, Energy Secretary Rick Perry and President Trump have all questioned the extent of humans’ contribution to climate change. One of the EPA’s Web pages posted scientific conclusions similar to those in the new report until earlier this year, when Pruitt’s deputies ordered it removed.
The report could have considerable legal and policy significance, providing new and stronger support for the EPA’s greenhouse-gas “endangerment finding” under the Clean Air Act, which lays the foundation for regulations on emissions.
“This is a federal government report whose contents completely undercut their policies, completely undercut the statements made by senior members of the administration,” said Phil Duffy, director of the Woods Hole Research Center.
The government is required to produce the national assessment every four years. This time, the report is split into two documents, one that lays out the fundamental science of climate change and the other that shows how the United States is being affected on a regional basis. Combined, the two documents total over 2,000 pages.
The first document, called the Climate Science Special Report, is now a finalized report, having been peer-reviewed by the National Academy of Sciences and vetted by experts across government agencies. It was formally unveiled Friday.
“I think this report is basically the most comprehensive climate science report in the world right now,” said Robert Kopp, a climate scientist at Rutgers who is an expert on sea-level rise and served as one of the report’s lead authors.
It affirms that the United States is already experiencing more extreme heat and rainfall events and more large wildfires in the West, that more than 25 coastal U.S. cities are already experiencing more flooding, and that seas could rise by between 1 and 4 feet by the year 2100, and perhaps even more than that if Antarctica proves to be unstable, as is feared. The report says that a rise of over eight feet is “physically possible” with high levels of greenhouse-gas emissions but that there’s no way right now to predict how likely it is to happen.
When it comes to rapidly escalating levels of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere, the report states, “there is no climate analog for this century at any time in at least the last 50 million years.”
Most striking, perhaps, the report warns of the unpredictable — changes that scientists cannot foresee that could involve tipping points or fast changes in the climate system. These could switch the climate into “new states that are very different from those experienced in the recent past.”
Given these strong statements — and how they contradict Trump administration statements and policies — some members of the scientific community had speculated that the administration might refuse to publish the report or might alter its conclusions. During the last Republican presidential administration, that of George W. Bush, the national assessment process was highly controversial, and a senior official at the White House Council on Environmental Quality edited aspects of some government science reports.
Yet multiple experts, as well as some administration officials and federal scientists, said that Trump political appointees did not change the special report’s scientific conclusions. While some edits have been made to its final version — for instance, omitting or softening some references to the Paris climate agreement — those were focused on policy.
“I’m quite confident to say there has been no political interference in the scientific messages from this report,” David Fahey, an atmospheric scientist with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and a lead author of the study, told reporters on Friday. “Whatever fears we had weren’t realized. … This report says what the scientists want it to say.”
A senior administration official, who asked for anonymity because the process is still underway, said in an interview that top Trump officials decided to put out the assessment without changing the findings of its contributors even if some appointees may have different views.
Glynis Lough, who is deputy director of the food and environment program at the Union of Concerned Scientists and had served as chief of staff for the National Climate Assessment at the U.S. Global Change Research Program until mid-2016, said in an interview that the changes made by government officials to the latest report “are consistent with the types of changes that were made in the previous administration for the 2014 National Climate Assessment, to avoid policy prescriptiveness.”
Perhaps no agency under Trump has tried to downplay and undermine climate science more than the EPA. Most recently, political appointees at the EPA instructed two agency scientists and one contractor not to speak as planned at a scientific conference in Rhode Island. The conference marked the culmination of a three-year report on the status of Narragansett Bay, New England’s largest estuary, in which climate change featured prominently.
The EPA also has altered parts of its website containing detailed climate data and scientific information. As part of that overhaul, in April the agency took down pages that had existed for years and contained a wealth of information on the scientific causes of global warming, its consequences and ways for communities to mitigate or adapt. The agency said that it was simply making changes to better reflect the new administration’s priorities and that any pages taken down would be archived.
Pruitt has repeatedly advocated for the creation of a government-wide “red team/blue team” exercise, in which a group of outside critics would challenge the validity of mainstream scientific conclusions around climate change.
Other departments have also removed climate-change documents online: The Interior Department’s Bureau of Land Management, for example, no longer provides accessto documents assessing the danger that future warming poses to deserts in the Southwest.
And when U.S. Geological Survey scientists working with international researchers published an article in the journal Nature evaluating how climate change and human population growth would affect where rain-fed agriculture could thrive, the USGS published a news release that omitted the words “climate change” altogether.
The Agriculture Department’s climate hubs, however, remain freely available online. And researchers at the U.S. Forest Service have continued to publish papers this year on how climate change is affecting wildfires, wetlands and aquatic habitat across the country.
While the Trump administration has not altered the new climate science report substantially, it is already coming under fire from some of the administration’s allies.
The day before it was published, Steven Koonin, a New York University physicist who has met with Pruitt and advocated for the “red team/blue team” exercise, preemptively criticized the document in the Wall Street Journal, calling it “deceptive.”
Koonin argued that the report “ominously notes that while global sea level rose an average 0.05 inch a year during most of the 20th century, it has risen at about twice that rate since 1993. But it fails to mention that the rate fluctuated by comparable amounts several times during the 20th century.”
But one of the report’s authors suggested Koonin is creating a straw man. “The report does not state that the rate since 1993 is the fastest than during any comparable period since 1900 (though in my informal assessment it likely is), which is the non-statement Steve seems to be objecting to,” Kopp countered by email.
Still, the line of criticism could be amplified by conservatives in the coming days.
Meanwhile, the administration also released, in draft form, the longer Volume 2 of the National Climate Assessment, which looks at regional impacts across the United States. This document is not final but is now available for public comment and will now begin a peer review process, with final publication expected in late 2018.
Already, however, it is possible to discern some of what it will conclude. For instance, a peer-reviewed EPA technical document released to inform the assessment finds that the monetary costs of climate change in the United States could be dramatic.
That document, dubbed the Climate Change Impacts and Risk Analysis, finds that in a high-end warming scenario, high temperatures could lead to the loss per year of “almost 1.9 billion labor hours across the national workforce” by 2090. That would mean $160 billion annually in lost income to workers.
With high levels of warming, coastal property damage in 2090 could total $120 billion annually, and deaths from temperature extremes could reach 9,300 per year, or in monetized terms, $140 billion annually in damage. Additional tens of billions annually could occur in the form of damage to roads, rail lines and electrical infrastructure, the report finds.
This could all be lessened considerably, the report notes, if warming is held to lower levels.
UN warns that drastic action is needed to meet climate targets set in the Paris agreement.
THE GUARDIAN — The concentration of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere increased at record speed last year to hit a level not seen for more than three million years, the UN has warned.
The new report has raised alarm among scientists and prompted calls for nations to consider more drastic emissions reductions at the upcoming climate negotiations in Bonn.
“Globally averaged concentrations of CO2 reached 403.3 parts per million (ppm) in 2016, up from 400.00 ppm in 2015 because of a combination of human activities and a strong El Niño event,” according to The Greenhouse Gas Bulletin, the UN weather agency’s annual flagship report.
This acceleration occurred despite a slowdown – and perhaps even a plateauing – of emissions because El Niño intensified droughts and weakened the ability of vegetation to absorb carbon dioxide. As the planet warms, El Niños are expected to become more frequent.
The increase of 3.3 ppm is considerably higher than both the 2.3 ppm rise of the previous 12 months and the average annual increase over the past decade of 2.08ppm. It is also well above the previous big El Niño year of 1998, when the rise was 2.7 ppm.
The study, which uses monitoring ships, aircraft and stations on the land to track emissions trends since 1750, said carbon dioxide in the atmosphere is now increasing 100 times faster than at the end of the last ice age due to population growth, intensive agriculture, deforestation and industrialization.
The last time Earth experienced similar CO2 concentration rates was during the Pliocene era (three to five million years ago), when the sea level was up to 20m higher than now.
The authors urged policymakers to step up countermeasures to reduce the risk of global warming exceeding the Paris climate target of between 1.5C and 2C.
“Without rapid cuts in CO2 and other greenhouse gas emissions, we will be heading for dangerous temperature increases by the end of this century, well above the target set by the Paris climate change agreement,” World Meteorological Organisation chief Petteri Taalas said in a statement.
The momentum from the Paris accord in 2015 is faltering due to the failure of national governments to live up to their promises. In a report to be released on Tuesday, UN Environment will show the gap between international goals and domestic commitments leaves the world on course for warming well beyond the 2C target and probably beyond 3C. International efforts to act have also been weakened by US president Donald Trump’s decision to quit the accord.
Prof Dave Reay, professor of carbon management at the University of Edinburgh, said: “This should set alarm bells ringing in the corridors of power. We know that, as climate change intensifies, the ability of the land and oceans to mop up our carbon emissions will weaken. There’s still time to steer these emissions down and so keep some control, but if we wait too long humankind will become a passenger on a one-way street to dangerous climate change.”
“The numbers don’t lie. We are still emitting far too much and this needs to be reversed,” the head of UN Environment Erik Solheim said in reaction to the new report. “What we need now is global political will and a new sense of urgency.”
The report comes amid growing concerns that nature’s ability to deal with CO2 is weakening. Recent studies show forest regions are being cleared and degraded so rapidly that they are now emitting more carbon than they absorb.
“These large increase show it is more important than ever to reduce our emissions to zero – and as soon as possible,” said Piers Forster, director of the Priestley International Centre for Climate at the University of Leeds. “If vegetation can no longer help out absorbing our emissions in these hot years we could be in trouble.”
The World Meteorological Organization predicted 2017 will again break records for concentrations of carbon dioxide and methane, but the growth rate will not be as fast because there is no El Niño effect.
A recent press release by FPL (formerly Florida Power and Light) talks highly of on-going solar construction. FPL exclaims that they’ve built 300MW of solar power across eight power plants. They also communicate that FPL is the largest holder of solar resources in Florida – 375MW. It’s a facade.
ELECTREK — FPL has worked very hard to manipulate the public and political machinations of rulemaking. And this political harm means Florida is lagging in the solar race – despite being the Sunshine State – because of bureaucratic capture of the legislative bodies and aggressive, misleading advertising against public-led solar movements.
One could very easily chalk this up to something like ‘that’s politics in the big city.’ And you’d be correct – but that doesn’t make the situation smart. In 2016, Florida – third largest state in population and twenty-second largest in area – wasn’t in the top ten of installed solar power. FPL’s installation volumes announced are actually paltry totals. There are individual power plants larger than all of FPL’s current and planned solar.
Historically, the argument has been that making solar “cost-effective” in Florida has proven difficult. Even after announcing plans to increase its solar generation capacity by 225 megawatts by the end of next year, FPL said last week that “solar power — even the most economical large-scale installation — is generally not yet cost-effective in FPL’s service area.”
The argument is based upon the cloudiness of Florida. Solar power plants in the southwest of the USA – where NextERA, FPL’s parent company, builds and owns facilities – get seven to eight ‘noon time sun hours’ every day. In South Florida, FPL’s territory – that number is closer to five hours. True – less sunlight than the deserts of Arizona, still double the sunlight of Germany (and we know what Germany has done).
And we’ll give FPL some credit for keeping the price of electricity reasonable – 8-12¢/kWh. It makes it harder to convince people invest in a new technology when the current technology is so reasonably priced…of course, reasonably polluting as well.
The arguments from FPL would be sound – “solar doesn’t fit in Florida” – if we didn’t have evidence of two things. One – FPL is trying its hardest to stop free market development of solar power. And second – what solar actually costs in 2017.
FPL has wrested control of the Public Service Commission via the politicians who pick them using consistent, omnipresent lobbying. The purpose of the Public Service Commission is to act as an arbiter, in favor of the general public, to balance the monopolistic powers that come with the large amounts of money that power companies are given permission to earn. Florida power corporations have breached the wall that defends the people.
More ominous than the standard political cash purchases are tens of millions of dollars spent trying to control the public via amazingly deceptive legislation wording. Last year, the Miami Herald broke the story open about how the electricity utilities “use a little bit of political jiu-jitsu” to steal the sun. Among the more nuanced political attacks I’ve seen in a while came from the Herald story:
“To the degree that we can use a little bit of political jiu-jitsu and take what they’re kind of pinning us on and use it to our benefit either in policy, in legislation or in constitutional referendums — if that’s the direction you want to take — use the language of promoting solar, and kind of, kind of put in these protections for consumers that choose not to install rooftop.”
FPL and other utilities backed the above actions with more than $20 million. Voters rejected it as they learned its highly misrepresentative nature.
And the worst part of this legislation wasn’t that it tried to trick people into supporting it, but that the legislation was actually being used to hide another piece of legislation by confusing the population about what they were even voting on.
A group named Florida Solar Choice crafted a piece of legislation that would allow individuals the right to buy solar electricity from anyone who built a solar plant. For instance, imagine you own a house and want solar power – but don’t want to pay a lot of upfront money. Well, like a million people in the USA – you’d want to call someone like SolarCity or SunRun or Vivint and ‘lease’ your rooftop in exchange for solar power. If you own a large commercial property – you’re allowed to lease an air conditioner system, you’re allowed to lease anything…but you cannot lease your own roof to sell you electricity.
FPL fights tooth and nail to block third parties from selling you electricity. Florida is one of four states that outlaw third-party leasing.
FPL has shown clearly, via this press release and their prior actions, that they’re just like other electric utilities who are trying their hardest to protect profits even if it harms the environment. And the utilities know that they’re harming the planet’s health – it’s been the policy of the Electric Edison Institute to lie to the public about climate change since the 1960s.
The electric utilities are within a complex time. They’re being attacked by a fundamental shift in how business is done. They aren’t structured in a way to make money off of you and I making electricity. So they go the path of buying the machines that should manage them. And they buy them with money from your own bills – and while it’s against the rules, it’s still happening.
Recognize the dynamics of this situation and don’t fall for the BS headlines. Florida is failing in solar power deployment because of FPL and others. People’s health and bills, the environment and the planet are bearing the consequences.
4,500% Improvement for Solar: 2016 Outcomes vs. 2006 U.S. Forecasts Shows Stunningly Better-Than-Expected Results
WASHINGTON -- Just how fast is the U.S. clean energy revolution unfolding? America’s 2016 solar energy capacity was 4,500 percent higher than government experts predicted 10 years earlier while the nation’s wind supply was 350 percent above their forecast, according to a Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) report released today.
NRDC’s fifth annual energy report, America’s Clean Energy Revolution, confirms the massive shifts in the nation’s energy landscape, dominated by clean energy progress, both with records shattered in the past year and a half and from what the U.S. Energy Information (EIA) projected a decade earlier.
“America’s clean energy revolution proves that we don’t have to choose between the environment and a booming economy,” said Amanda Levin, report co-author and NRDC clean energy advocate. “Clean energy not only cuts pollution, it’s also one of the fast-growing areas for U.S. jobs and contributes billions to our nation’s economy annually.
“When you look at how clean energy development has exploded beyond official government projections from just 10 years ago, it offers hope that its potential will continue to far surpass expectations and we’ll meet our U.S. climate goals,” she said.
The NRDC report shows the EIA in 2006:
>> Misjudged the huge increases in solar power, forecasting less than 1 gigawatt (GW) of installed solar by 2016 when the total was 46 times that amount, and no more than 18 GW of wind power, when it reached 82 GW – a nearly five-fold increase.
>> Overestimated the 2016 level of carbon dioxide pollution, which at 5.17 billion tons was 25 percent, or 1.67 billion tons, lower than forecasted.
>> Misread the rise of energy efficiency, which contributed to keeping U.S. energy consumption at 96.5 quads of energy, 17 percent below EIA’s projection of 115.6 quads.
>> Did not anticipate the demise of coal-fired power, which dropped 45 percent from the projected level of 2,235 terawatt hours (TWh) to 1,240 TWh.
In short, America’s clean energy revolution has taken root far more than expected and all signs point to continued growth.
“Dozens of clean energy records have been shattered across the United States in the last year and a half. And despite some new political headwinds, ever-improving economics will propel the clean energy transition in the years to come,” said co-author Ralph Cavanagh, co-director of NRDC’s energy program.
Other key findings in NRDC’s annual report:
>> For the first time since 1960, the average U.S. household spent less than 4 percent of its income on all energy in 2016—including gasoline and electricity spending—despite the much larger number of electronic gadgets and appliances we now use.
>> The U.S. economy grew by 17 percent between 2005 and 2016 while carbon dioxide emissions fell by 14 percent and energy use remained flat. This is in large part due to energy efficiency, the most productive and cost-effective way to meet U.S. energy needs.
>> Renewable energy grew to 14 percent of total U.S. electricity sales in 2016, with wind and solar amounting to 8 percent and hydropower and geothermal accounting for the other 6 percent. More than 14 GW of solar capacity was added in 2016 — almost double the record-breaking new amount in 2015. And for the first time in U.S. history, wind and solar energy made up more than 10 percent of all monthly electricity generation.
The report can be found at https://www.nrdc.org/sites/default/files/energy-environment-report-2017.pdf
The co-authors have posted a related blog at: https://www.nrdc.org/experts/amanda-levin/clean-energy-momentum-remains-strong-despite-federal-changes
China has begun to severely crack down on factories that have been flouting their emissions regulations. The country has shut down 40 percent of its factories to battle the immense pollution levels in the nation.
FUTURISM — China is in the midst of an all-out blitz on polluters flouting emissions standards, closing tens of thousands of factories in a massive effort to address the nation’s catastrophic pollution problems.
Estimates of the crackdown suggest as much as 40 percent of China’s factories have been temporarily closed by safety inspectors, with officials from more than 80,000 factories charged with criminal offences for breaching emissions limits over the past year.
The months-long campaign coincides with China announcing this week at its Communist Party congress its plan to cut the concentration of hazardous fine particulate matter (called PM2.5) from 47 micrograms per cubic metre in 2016 to 35 micrograms by 2035.
“It will be very difficult to reach the goal, and we need to make greater efforts to achieve it,” environmental protection minister Li Ganjie said at an event on Monday.
China’s modern efforts to tackle domestic pollution date back to 2013, when the nation announced 10 measures to clean up the country’s air, including reducing emissions from heavily polluting industries by 30 percent by the end of 2017.
To help hit its targets, China has ramped up factory and power plant inspections in the past two years across several provinces, to make sure thousands of companies aren’t breaching emissions laws.
“[B]asically, you’re seeing these inspectors go into factories for surprise inspections,” supply chain consultant Gary Huang from 80/20 Sourcing told NPR.
“They’re instituting daily fines, and sometimes – in the real severe cases – criminal enforcement. People are getting put in jail.”
The moves – which could carry with them the risk of harming China’s strong economic growth, despite the government’s claims otherwise – won’t just result in bluer skies.
It’s hoped that by cracking down on polluters, China will also see cleaner water and enjoy a vast range of ecological benefits – plus of course, breathe easier.
“For those areas that have suffered ecological damage, their leaders and cadres will be held responsible for life,” said deputy director of the Communist Party’s Office of the Central Leading Group on Financial and Economic Affairs, Yang Weimin, told The New York Times.
“Our people will be able to see stars at night and hear birds chirp.”
In previous winters, city officials have been directed to enforce closures for only a few weeks at a time, but with 2017’s end-of-year targets just months away, China is shuttering polluters at a rate Li calls “unprecedented”.
“These special campaigns are not a one-off, instead it is an exploration of long-term mechanisms,” Li announced this week.
“They have proven effective so we will continue with these measures.”
What this means for the industrial sector in China moving forward beyond 2017 isn’t yet exactly clear.
Power plants and factories are still adjusting to the new, unflinching enforcement of the environmental regime, and while thousands of companies are experiencing hardship right now, many think the industry will adapt with better, smarter, and safer ways of doing business that ultimately don’t endanger Chinese air – or the planet as a whole.
“It’s a huge event. It’s a serious event. I think many of us here believe it will become the new normal,” exporter Michael Crotty from China-based MKT & Associates told NPR.
“The consumers of China don’t want red and blue rivers. They don’t want to see grey skies every day.”
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