By Bryan Tilt

China is domestic to 1/2 the world's huge dams and provides dozens extra every year. the advantages are substantial: dams bring hydropower, supply trustworthy irrigation water, shield humans and farmland opposed to flooding, and bring hydroelectricity in a kingdom with a seeimingly insatiable urge for food for strength. As hydropower responds to a bigger proportion of strength call for, dams will help to lessen the intake of fossil fuels, welcome information in a rustic the place air and water toxins became dire and greenhouse fuel emissions are the top on the earth.

Yet the benefits of dams come at a excessive price for river ecosystems and for the social and fiscal overall healthiness of local community, who face displacement and farmland loss. This publication examines the array of water-management judgements confronted by means of chinese language leaders and their outcomes for neighborhood groups. targeting the southwestern province of Yunnan―a significant hub for hydropower improvement in China―which encompasses one of many world's such a lot biodiverse temperate ecosystems and one in all China's so much ethnically and culturally wealthy areas, Bryan Tilt takes the reader from the halls of decision-making energy in Beijing to Yunnan's rural villages. within the approach, he examines the contrasting values of presidency enterprises, hydropower businesses, NGOs, and native groups and explores how those values are associated with longstanding cultural norms approximately what's correct, right, and simply. He additionally considers some of the thoughts those teams use to persuade water-resource coverage, together with advocacy, petitioning, and public protest. Drawing on a decade of study, he deals his insights on even if the world's so much populous state will undertake larger transparency, elevated medical collaboration, and broader public participation because it maintains to develop economically.

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Additional info for Dams and Development in China : The Moral Economy of Water and Power

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Grounded upon a consistent traditional view of social norms and obligations, of the proper economic functions of several parties within the community” (Thompson 1971:79). The notion goes back to a seminal work by historian E. P. Thompson entitled “The Moral Economy of the English Crowd in the 18th Century” (1971). Its central premise is that contemporary economic and political interactions are shaped by norms with much deeper cultural and historical roots. Anthropologists and their colleagues in related social science disciplines have long been interested in the underlying concepts and motivations, both explicit and tacit, that drive people’s behavior and interactions with others.

Although there are many precedents in Chinese history for such feats of hydraulic engineering, today’s ambitious hydropower dam projects are on a scale that has no equal in human history. Balancing the economic benefits of hydropower with the ecological and social costs it causes is a technical problem, but it is also a normative one. 28 | CRISIS AND OPPORTUNIT Y: WATER RESOURCES AND DAMS It is a question of the values and worldviews that shape people’s relationships with water and how all of these things change over time.

25 billion tons of coal being burned each year. Even conservative projections suggest that China’s energy consumption will continue to rise in the coming years, if at a slightly slower rate, as its economy matures. This is one part of the global geographical picture of energy consumption, which is changing dramatically as new and dynamic economies emerge. 1 percent, taking shares from Europe and North America (Liu 2012:5). China’s rapid rate of annual growth, coupled with its huge population, means that China accounts for a lion’s share of the growth in energy consumption in the Asia Pacific region.

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Dams and Development in China : The Moral Economy of Water by Bryan Tilt
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