Interestingly, the Chinese youth did not show up at COP27 like the Germans as NGO-organized youth such as Friday for Future, Extinction Rebellion, The Last Generation or whatever jumps around and sticks itself on the streets or pours liquids over works of art or makes road blockades, but by means of very state- and party- obeying youth China prsents its shooting stars who refer to science as FFF and Western ecologists , but who come from science elite universities such as Tsinghua or Harvard or Yale and are also organized in the Global Alliance of Universities for Climate Protection (GAUC) and have studied natural sciences. Apparently, the CCP is presenting the young hydrology student Wang Xinlu as the Chinese Greta, Carla Reemtsma, Carola Rakete and Luise Neubauer in ONE government-official package. Don’t Demonstrate: Study and Learn from the CCP and the Xi Jinping Thought. This saves the world and the environment and the climate. Did those youngsters meet each other in Egypt at the COP 27?
„Young Chinese hydro-eco student makes Gen-Zers‘ voice heard at COP27
By Shan Jie
Published: Nov 21, 2022 09:16 PM
Young Chinese people in the new era are confident, aspirational, and responsible. With a global vision, they stand at the forefront of the times ready to fully commit to a more global outlook. Chinese people accept and quickly respond to the world’s trending schools of thought. Some members of China’s Generation Z have begun to practice the tenets of their „global citizen“ identity and use their actions to influence the society.
The Global Times has therefore launched a series of introductory stories on China’s Gen Zers who are interested in different global topics, such as environmental protection, equality, and employment issues, and invites them to share their stories, sentiments and ideas.
Recently, we spoke with two excellent Chinese students who care about climate change and just returned from the recently concluded 27th session of the Conference of the Parties of the UNFCCC (COP27) in Sharm el Sheikh, Egypt. They, representing the young generation, made their voices heard while gaining experience and honing their leadership skills by engaging with their communities and driving climate actions.
In recent years, Wang Xinlu has voyaged on the Jinsha River to collect water samples and guage water quality.
The river passes through some regions in Southwest China that have not been subjected to human exploitation. Wang treasures the good feeling of floating on the peaceful water and surrounded by the pure natural sceneries there.
Wang is a PhD student studying Hydro-environmental Engineering at Tsinghua University. Her research focuses on exploring hydro-eco mechanisms and the impact of large-scale hydropower construction on the Yangtze River of China.
„River ecological protection and climate change are also closely related, especially when we see the impact of the current climate extremes, many of which, in fact, are caused by climate change,“ Wang told the Global Times.
She is passionate about sustainable development, climate action, international governance, and collaborative solutions to these issues. With her knowledge in hydrology and ecology, she focuses on extreme hydrological events in terms of climate change and hopes to find better solutions.
This month, Wang went to Egypt as part of the COP27 Youth Delegates with the Global Alliance of Universities on Climate (GAUC) China delegation, which is initiated by top universities in the world including Tsinghua, aiming to advance climate change solutions through research, education, and public outreach.
There, Wang and her peers made their voices heard and gained vital experience which will help them in the future deal with climate issues.
Voices for the new generation
Majored in water conservancy, Wang had the opportunity to visit several hydropower stations at home and abroad and to learn about how these constructions are combined with local ecosystems.
„The hydropower projects proposed and constructed under Belt and Road Initiatives (BRI) are technologically sound,“ she said. „It is also an important part of the the topic of adaptation in confronting climate change, that is to financially and technologically aid less-developed countries, to help them counter the effects of climate disasters,“ she explained.
In 2019 she completed a climate change-related internship and this year, she started a climate change course at GAUC, which also affored her the opportunity to attend the COP27.
At the aspirational event, the youth ambassadors from different countries released an open letter directed to world leaders at the „Climate x“ event in the China Pavilion on November 9.
Global climate leaders including Xie Zhenhua, China’s special envoy on climate change, also attended the event. „Now is the time to encourage more young people to join this movement and put forward innovative solutions,“ he said at the event.
Wang and her peers also presented the letter to Inger Andersen, Under-Secretary-General of the United Nations and Executive Director of the United Nations Environment Programme.
„I feel lucky to be able to show our young people’s actions and commitment to world leaders with this letter,“ she said. „Our young people are very positive and willing to promote the awareness on climate change. I hope that other attendees of the COP27 were able to feel the passion of young people,“ she said.
Today, the youth are increasingly aware that the climate crisis presents challenges and risks, and that addressing climate change presents opportunities for sustainable development, according to the UN.
„In ongoing negotiations, each country just seeks its own benefit with numerous clashes. But a variety of interests and goals need to be dealt together to solve climate issues,“ Wang said.
„Young people will become the decision makers on climate change issues in the future. The COP27 and organizations like GAUC have provided us with an opportunity to build up connections and mutual trust,“ she said.
Wang was born in Weihai, East China’s Shandong Province, which is a coastal city.
„I feel that I have a natural intimacy with the ocean, so I have paid extra attention to the marine environment since I was a child, especially after I went to college. This is also one of the reasons that led me to focus more on climate change,“ she said.
When Wang first started at Tsinghua in 2016, it was a time when northern China was impacted by severe smog. „In winter, we often needed to wear face masks,“ she said.
„But after some years, air quality in Beijing has greatly improved. It means if we acted, there would be changes, even in bigger issues such as the climate change,“ she said.
In Wang’s opinion, in dealing with environment and climate issues, China is „more inclined to action.“ „China formulates climate policies based on its own national conditions and has always promoted the achievement of such goals,“ she said.
Thanks to China’s persistent efforts to combat all types of pollution, clear waters and blue skies are becoming more common across the country.
Air quality has improved notably, with the average concentration of PM2.5 hazardous airborne particles decreasing from 46 micrograms per cubic meter in 2015 to 30 micrograms per cubic meter in 2021, according to the Ministry of Ecology and Environment, the Xinhua News Agency reported in September.
At least the CCP presents Wang Xinlu as a Chinese representative of Generation Z and no longer the millennials, as a counter-model to the Fridays for Future who only demonstrate and do not study natural sciences, but instead refer to Lesch and Yogewar and “THE” sciences (excluding the eastern ones). Conversely, one knows the kind of natural scientists, especially hydrotechnology from authoritarian states, who have to orient their understanding of ecology to the futuristic-ideological dreams of the future and scientific understanding of their governments, especially since the CCP leadership is made up to a large extent of former students of natural sciences of their elite universities, unlike Western governments or the siloviki of Russia. You know that from the Egyptians, when you point out the ecologically disastrous effects of their Aswan dam and other dams, or in China with the Three Gorges Dam or with the Heaven Canal to Beijing from Tibet or other dam constructions in the Himalayas, which dry up Indiaand Southeast Asia. Then it’s less about scientific or ecological knowledge, but often about national prestige and the Chinese or other nationalistic Chinese dream and about economic development , rejenuvation and growth, to which everything is subordinated. We suggested to Professor van Ess to invite China’s Chinese Greta to German universities and maybe initiate a DAAD or other exchange program with the Global Alliance of Universities for Climate Protection (GAUC) and bring both into connection and discussion. What is clear, however, is that the CCP would never accept if Wang Xinlu somehow stuck himself on the street, organized student strikes, wanted to organize mass protests, constantly criticized and put pressure on her government—she would probably have been banned from her job, end up in a Chinese gulag or house arrest or, in the event of mass protests, there would be a new Tiananmen massacre. In any case, the CCP thinks it can do a service to humanity through its kind of science, bringing closer the Chinese dream of national rejenuvation as a world power, also through its research contributions to such international mega-projects as ITER. Nuclear fusion instead of fission and nuclear power of the traditional kind, creating an artificial sun that, if successful, could solve all of the world’s energy problems in one swoop:
“ Core components of China-made world’s largest ‚artificial sun‘ accomplished, new breakthrough in core technology
By Cao Siqi and Du Qiongfang Published: Nov 22, 2022 09:02 PM
Celebration of the accomplishment of the prototype piece of the enhanced-heat-flux first wall panel of the international thermonuclear experimental reactor, also known as the world’s largest „artificial sun,“ is held in Guizhou Province on November 22, 2022. Photo: Courtesy of the Southwestern Institute of Physics under the China National Nuclear Corporation
Manufacturing of the core components of the next-generation „artificial sun,“ the full-size prototype of the enhanced-heat-flux (EHF) first wall (FW) panel, has been completed in China with its core indexes being significantly better than its design requirements and meeting the conditions for mass manufacturing, marking a new breakthrough by China in the scientific research of the core technology of EHF FW, the Global Times learned from its research team on Tuesday.
Also known as the world’s largest „artificial sun,“ the international thermonuclear experimental reactor (ITER) for the exploration and development of nuclear fusion energy is one of the largest and most far-reaching international scientific projects in the world, and the largest international scientific and technological cooperation project that China participates in as an equal alongside with the EU, India, Japan, South Korea, Russia and the US.
China signed an agreement on the launch of the ITER project with the other six parties in 2006 and has shouldered responsibility for about 9 percent of its tasks.
A new breakthrough was made in research for the „artificial sun“ in China in October, with its HL-2M plasma current exceeding 1 million amperes, setting a new record for the operation of controllable nuclear fusion in the country.
The EHF FW panel, which can withstand a surface plasma ion temperature of the reactor core up to 150 million C, some 10 times hotter than the real Sun, during the operation of the ITER, is the most critical core component of the reactor, involving the core technology of the fusion reactor construction.
The technology mastered by China previously took the lead in passing international certification.
The full-size prototype piece of the ITER EHF FW was developed by the Southwestern Institute of Physics under the state-owned China National Nuclear Corp (CNNC).
After the researchers from the institute manufactured EHF FW fingers in batches, they then completed the welding and assembly of the components by overcoming setbacks such as high temperatures, power cuts and COVID-19 outbreaks by cooperating with Guizhou Aerospace Xinli Technology Co, a company specialized in metal smelting and forging, which is located in Zunyi city in Southwest China’s Guizhou Province.
The Chinese team, which took the lead in manufacturing the prototype piece in the international team, once again made a substantial engineering breakthrough for the research and development of the key components of ITER, marking China’s solemn fulfillment of its international commitment.
Luo Delong, director of the China International Nuclear Fusion Energy Program Execution Center under the Ministry of Science and Technology, addressed the achievement and said that great achievements have been made by the Chinese team after years of efforts and lots of fruitful research and development work.
Through the work, China has independently mastered the principle of the process and made breakthroughs in technology while also providing „Chinese wisdom“ and „Chinese plans,“ making huge contributions to independently master key technologies, fulfilling international commitments and demonstrating its responsibilities as a major power, Luo said.
China also wants to be a pioneer in e-mobility and the majority of the German automotive industry is currently orienting itself towards China. Plus an interesting interview with the Pope of German automobile industry Dudenhöfer on the future of the auto industry: China instead of Ford, against „pure Chinabashing“ and for a new supplier industry.
“Autopope Dudenhöffer: China bashing not good for Germany as an industrial location”
Professor Ess commented:
„He’s definitely right about that. The only thing that irritates me is that he is so massively championing the electric car, which is the reason for Mercedes‘ problems in China. He doesn’t understand that the Chinese would rather like to buy from Mercedes a normal car. That is most likely the reason for the problems.”
I also find it interesting to look at Japan. Hybrids, hydrogen cars, fuel cell cars and the current e-cars are still being developed at the same time. They are betting on several horses and are „open to technology results“ like the FDP. while the German car companies seem to only bet on one horse because of the Chinese market. Don’t forget Tesla either. What actually happened to the Google car?
Professor van Ess takes a similar view:
“I have been to the STS Forum in Kyoto twice. Since the Japanese have always sent the Toyota boss and the head of government. Both have emphasized that for them hydrogen is the technology of the future, not the electric car. Quite interesting.“
Or is there a need for more industrial policy, which Sascha Lobo considers to be the devil’s work in the field of IT technology and rejects comparisons with Airbus and the owner of the Munich Merkur. Dirk Yippen also sees ndustrial policy as the fundamental sin and denounced even Franz Josef Strauss as a „state socialist“ because of the Airbus success like the FDP? What actually happened to Altmeier’s digital and industrial policy strategy? Conversely, it is now more than banal industrial policy: The word „war economy“ is now often used in German newspapers, like Xi Jinping´s „protracted war“ for example the head of the Munich Merkur Georg Anastasiadis speaks of a “war economy” in connection with the Ukraine war, on in the German newsper Freitag one commentator proposed “war economy” as a solution to climate change and the energy transition:
“Ulrike Herrmann: The solution to the climate crisis? Green Shrink!” In conversation Ulrike Herrmann has published a book about “The End of Capitalism”. She believes that only a „war economy“ can reduce CO₂ emissions quickly. In an interview with Jakob Augstein, she explains how this transition can succeed.“
What do Habeck and the rest say about this? All open and unanswered questions. In addition, the following Global Review articles recommended:
Industriepolitik-Erfolgsrezept oder Teufelswerk?
Folgen der Globalisierung und mangelnder Industriepolitik–sind die USA noch kriegsfähig?
Technological revolution in China and the USA- what about Europe and Eurasia?
But apart from the belief in science, industrial policy Made in China 2025 and such a glorious state government as the CCP, the youth and boys in the West from the point of view of the CCP lack a work ethic, which is supposed to explain its deindustrialization. Such jis point of view in programmatic article in the Global Times by an author who is also writing in the CCP central organ, People’s Daily:
“US manufacturing causes economic, spiritual decline
By Ding Gang
Published: Nov 23, 2022 07:01 PM
NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg warned on Monday about „growing Chinese efforts to control“ critical infrastructure, supply chains and key industrial sectors.
Like some European politicians who have pushed the „China threat“ theory, Stoltenberg is using his fertile imagination to create false reasons to hide the looming recession across Europe in both economy and spirit.
The question for Europe is not what key facilities China wants „to control,“ but whether European countries themselves have the capacity to build them. Ultimately, it is how Europe’s economy will regroup on top of a collapsing manufacturing base.
The challenge for Europe is not what the Chinese are doing to Europe, but how the Europeans are doing to themselves.
The fact that Europe’s economy is already fragile and has been hit hard again by the energy crisis triggered by the Russia-Ukraine conflict is enough of a wake-up call for Europe’s politicians and elites.
Stoltenberg would do well to ask the young people around him if they are willing to take jobs in the manufacturing sector and sit on assemble lines for a whole working day?
They would rather „lie flat.“
According to a survey by Eurostat in May this year, 13.1 percent of the 15-29-year-olds in the EU in 2021 were NEET – Young people Not in Education, Employment or Training.
The UK is a typical example of manufacturing decline. Back in the day, Britain used to be the „factory of the world.“ Today, how much British manufacturing can still occupy a mainstream position in the world market?
According to the World Bank data, the UK’s manufacturing value added as a share of its GDP fell from 16.67 percent in 1990 to 8.59 percent in 2019.
Another World Bank figure shows that in the 23 most developed economies, including the US and major EU member states, manufacturing employment declined from about 28 percent of their GDP in 1970 to about 18 percent in 1994. Among the 15 countries in the EU, the share of manufacturing employment was relatively high in 1970 at over 30 percent, but then fell sharply to only 20 percent in 1994 and has continued to decline to about 15 percent to date.
Manufacturing in the EU today, especially in countries such as Germany, the Netherlands and Sweden, still maintains some high-end competitiveness. However, overall it is being challenged by the US, China, Japan, South Korea and other countries and regions.
The US is doing its best to tie the EU to its chariot to contain China, resulting in increasing constraints on the future autonomous development of its high-end manufacturing industry, including market demand-oriented technological upgrading.
De-industrialization is a natural consequence of growth and capital expansion in the developed economies. This process is accelerating as the focus of employment shifts to the services sector. The inability of the services sector to absorb the sudden increase in the labor force has resulted in higher unemployment, lower incomes or lower living standards.
The development of European countries was once inseparable from the development of manufacturing, which on a large scale coincided with the religious spirit of hard work and solidarity among Europeans, fostering the growth of trade unions and balancing them with the power of capital to create a more equitable welfare society.
Long-term de-industrialization will also lead to a decline in people’s work ethic and skills, and the gradual disintegration of collective wage bargaining through increased services sector and self-employment, combined with aging and the arrival of immigrants changing labor levels, have been hurting the foundations of the European welfare societies.
Nowadays, some European politicians and elites look at China with a strong sense of „ideological superiority.“ In fact, if you look carefully at China’s development, you will realize that what really surpasses Europe is precisely that spirit of hard work to make families rich and children well educated.
So, the question is not at all what facilities China wants „to control“ in Europe, but whether Europeans can get back the kind of working spirit that brought Europe to development in the post-industrial society.
The author was a senior editor with People’s Daily, and currently is a senior fellow with the Chongyang Institute for Financial Studies at Renmin University of China. email@example.com. Follow him on Twitter @dinggangchina
Sounds a bit like circular reasoning. De-industrialization as a result of the transition to a service society as a natural, almost trend of a natural law and thus a decrease in the will to work, the work ezhics in the Chinese ( Confucian) spirit in the West. The young people should no longer lie around lazily, but go into the (no longer existing) industry(?) and then a reindustrialization would probably take place as a result. Sounds a lot like Max Weber’s Protestant work ethic, which the Chinese are now turning against the West. In addition to the work ethics , economic conditions such as cheap labour, taxes and other investment climates are also part of it. So very morally and monocausally according to the slogan: Get to work, you lazy Western bastards. Send the Western youth to the factories or sometimes to a Chinese style labor camp or US style boot camp. Well, China has experience with that and a long tradition and thousand year´s experience of forced labour like today with the Uigurs. But one also reads about an increasing change in values among the Chinese youth and also more of work-life balance and a silent quiting to reduce work stress and family models of earlier generations.