Critique on Energy for China Article
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Faced with explosive economic growth, China's energy demands have soared, forcing it to become a net importer of oil. In 2004, China became the world's second largest importer of oil, beating out Japan which had been second. Current trends indicate that oil imports will make up 40% of China's total consumption by 2010. China has tried to bring its domestic cost of gasoline more in line with oil costs on the world market. As a result, gasoline prices increased steadily during the early 2000s. Attempting to limit its dependence on oil imports, the Chinese government wants to develop domestic oil sources and to substitute other fuels for oil. Thus far, China's oil supplies have proved less than promising, and coal is the only major alternative fuel under production.
With its fossil fuel consumption - and the accompanying greenhouse gas emissions - so steadily on the rise, China dominates international concerns over global climate warming. In the early 2000s, China's per capita motor vehicle ownership was low, and buses and other forms of mass transit were the most widely used types of transportation. Because of projected increases in motor vehicle ownership in coming decades, China's 2025 projected carbon dioxide emissions are 3.2 billion tons per year, compared with current global carbon dioxide emissions of 6.15 billion tons per year. China can justify its increased energy consumption and emissions as products of fair economic development. For example, China's projected ownership of motor vehicles in 2020 is only 52 vehicles per 1000 people, which is about one-fifteenth what the U.S. level was in 2000.