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China's Varied Land and People
Transcript of China's Varied Land and People
Despite One Child Law, Pop. Grows
Huang He and Chang Jiang Information
...by far the easiest way to get around.
Plateau of Tibet
Rivers Provide, yet Devastate
Population Growth Continues!
The most important rivers in East Asia flow through China. They begin in the Plateau of Tibet and flow eastward to the Pacific. The Huang He (AKA Yellow River) in northern China carries tons of fine yellow-brown soil called loess (LEHS) that blows in from deserts. When deposited, the rich soil makes the North China Plain a major wheat growing area. Throughout history, the Huang He has regularly flooded the land, destroying homes and drowning people. As a result, the Chinese called the Huang He "China's Sorrow."
China's other great river is called the Chang Jiang (AKA Yangtze). This river is Asia's longest, flowing 3,400 miles through spectacular gorges and plains. The Chinese have just completed construction of the Three Gorges Dam - the world's largest dam - to prevent flooding and supply hydroelectric power. The lake that has been created behind the dam has forced over a million people from the homes and ruined building that have been there for hundreds of years.
In 1979, China enacted a policy to encourage families to have no more than one child. Although not followed by all Chinese, the "one child" policy has helped slow China's growth rate. With almost 1.4 billion people, China's greatest challenge has been finding jobs for it's young people. In November 2013, the Chinese government announced plans to change the policy to allow for two children per couple when one parent is an only child.
Monday, February 17, 2014
Vol XCIII, No. 311
Varied Land and Climate
China's Population is varied and unique
China's landscape is extremely varied. Out of the Southwestern portions rise the Plateau of Tibet, whereas the Northwest holds the Taklamakan Desert. In the East you'll find massive human populations along the coast and rivers, farming any land that is available.
Since China is so big, it also has various climate types. In the south, visitors will find tropical dry and humid subtropical climates. The east provides highland, desert and steppe climates, whereas the Northeast has humid continental climates much like Minnesota. See page 696 for more detail.
The Han ethnic group makes up 92% of population, yet the other 8% is made up of 55 different ethnic groups.
Mandarin Chinese is the official language.
Although the Communist government has limited religious practices, Buddhist, Confucian, and other traditional faiths still survive.
65% of China's population lives in rural areas. But China's cities are growing rapidly!
People living in China's cities, generally, have a higher standard of living.
Nearly 100 Chinese cities have over 1 million people.
Many Chinese lack access to information that American's take for granted. This is because the government regulates the internet and media. One example of this is that few young Chinese know about the 1989 Tiananmen Square Massacre where thousands of students were killed as they peacefully protested for democracy.
China's Varied Land and People
Tibet and the Himalayas
Nu Jiang River Crossing
Three Gorges Dam: The Real Cost
Economic Changes in China
A famous image from the 1989 Tiananmen Square Protest
In the late 1970's, China's leaders began permitting some free market reforms in an attempt to improve the economy. Today people can choose the jobs they want and keep their profits. The country now has one of the world's fastest growing economies. The Chinese are leaders in the production of rice, tea, wheat, potatoes, textiles, electronics, and manufacturing. Eager to learn new business methods, the Chinese have asked other countries to invest in their companies. Many companies are now jointly owned by Chinese and foreign business people.
Inside a Chinese Apple Factory
China's economic growth has harmed the environment. China burns so much coal for fuel that many cities have developed a serious air pollution problem. See the clip below for more info.
China's Environment is Hurting!
New York Times: 1.2 Million Deaths Linked to China Air Pollution