China as a new shaper of international development: the environmental implications


The emergence of China as a global player challenges the pre-existing dominance of the OECD countries and will continue to be a crucial force for global change in coming decades. The implications of China’s rise will be most significant for low- and middle-income countries, but the outcomes will also affect China’s relations with traditional donors and the understanding of the process of development. While these issues are increasingly explored at the political and economic level, very little analysis is available for the environmental impacts that China has on low- and middle-income countries. It is well understood that China plays a major role in relation to climate change, energy use and natural resource use at the global level; however, the perspective of China’s environmental impacts on low- and middle-income countries is underexplored. This Special Issue, therefore, elaborates the rise of China from the environmental perspective and assesses the impacts of China’s rise on low- and middle-income countries for international research, policy and practice in the field of environment and development. The findings draw on insights relevant for energy, water, forestry and land issues in Asia, Africa and Latin America.

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We would like to thank the UK Economics and Social Research Council ESRC for two grants on China’s rise and its implications for international development and the environment (ESRC Grant References: RES-075-25-0019 and ES/J01320X/1).

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Correspondence to Frauke Urban.

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Urban, F., Mohan, G. & Cook, S. China as a new shaper of international development: the environmental implications. Environ Dev Sustain 15, 257–263 (2013).

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  • China
  • Environment
  • Development
  • Global player
  • Developing countries