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Blazing a new path

Is the Western picture of a careless polluter a fair depiction of China? Derek Brower looks at the country's efforts to change its image

ONE THING eco-warriors and their enemies in the do-nothing brigade have in common is China. Because when it comes to climate change, China is the whipping boy for both opposing camps. For green campaigners, Beijing's apparent policy of economic growth at all costs is the prime example of the world's failure to take the threat of climate change seriously. For those who would rather avoid action in their own countries, China is a convenient scapegoat: if Beijing will not do anything, what is the point in doing something ourselves? But both camps are in for a shock. Beijing is doing something. China remains home to many of the world's most polluted cities, according to the Blacksmith Institute

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