"China’s signature foreign policy, the Belt and Road initiative, has
garnered much attention and controversy. Many have voiced fears about
how the huge infrastructure project might expand China’s military and
political influence across the world. But the environmental damage
potentially wrought by the project has received scant attention.
The policy aims to connect China with Europe, East Africa and the rest
of Asia, via a massive network of land and maritime routes. It includes
building a series of deepwater ports, dubbed a “string of pearls”, to
create secure and efficient sea transport.
All up, the cost of investments associated with the project have been
estimated at as much as US$8 trillion. But what about the environmental
Coastal development typically damages habitats and species on land and
in the sea. So the Belt and Road plan may irreversibly damage the
world’s oceans – but it also offers a chance to better protect them."
*** Xanni ***
Chief Scientist, Xanadu
Partner, Glass Wings
Manager, Serious Cybernetics