China Watch, Food, Renewable Energy, News, Natural Disasters & Peacemaking, e2 - Eye on Earth, News Story, Commentary, Eye on Earth

Environmental "Tipping Points": Ecosystem Health and Community Vitality Go Hand In Hand

Washington, DC— In places as diverse as the Philippines, India, and New York City, people are addressing complex environmental problems by finding their positive "tipping points"—a point where catalytic action can set off a cascade of positive changes that tip the system towards sustainability. "We don't have to solve an entire problem at once. We make a few key changes and let a system use its self-organizing powers to mend itself," write Gerald Marten, Steve Brooks, and Amanda Suutari, authors of Environmental Tipping Points: A New Slant on Strategic Environmentalism.


Washington, D.C. — Today the Worldwatch Institute launched its China Watch news service ( reporting on developments in energy, agriculture, population, water, health, and the environment in China. This new online feature is a joint initiative of Worldwatch and the Beijing-based Global Environmental Institute (GEI), made possible through the support of the Blue Moon Fund.

China Ranks Third Hardest Hit by Disasters

Over 70 percent of China's big cities, more than half of its population of 1.3 billion, and 75 percent of its key industrial and agricultural areas are located in regions prone to weather-related and geological disasters, according to Xinhua News Agency.


Since the latest outbreak of avian flu began in southeast Asia in 2003, public health officials, farmers, veterinarians, government officials, and the media have referred to the threat as a “natural” disaster. However, avian flu, mad cow disease, and other emerging diseases that can jump from animals to humans are symptoms of a larger change taking place in agriculture: the spread of factory farming. In the latest release from the Worldwatch Institute, Happier Meals: Rethinking the Global Meat Industry, Research Associate Danielle Nierenberg describes how factory farms are breaking the cycle between small farmers, their animals, and the environment, with collateral damage to human health and local communities. Mitigating the fallout will require a new approach to the way animals are raised, concludes Nierenberg.

China Tightens Controls Over Internet News, Raises Concern Among Environmental, Grassroots Groups

On September 25, the Chinese government set new regulations on Internet news content, strengthening its control over the operations of online news organizations and the country’s rapidly growing Internet population.

China Opens Up Aviation Market, Bringing Potential Environmental Challenges

In mid-August, China’s aviation administration, CAAC, issued a series of new policies aimed at increasing private investment in the civil aviation sector, according to a recent report released by the Center for Asia Pacific Aviation.


Johannesburg, South Africa—In a plenary speech to the 18th World Petroleum Congress today, Worldwatch Institute President Christopher Flavin declared that, "Global energy markets are at a tipping point, with new energy sources ready to begin replacing oil and other fossil fuels."
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