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Talking Points, July 15 - 29, 2009

Energy consumption and efforts to adopt greener energy technologies are the focus of this week's USC U.S.-China Institute e-newsletter. As always, the newsletter offers a comprehensive list of China-related events and exhibitions throughout North America.
July 16, 2009

USC U.S.-China Institute Weekly Newsletter

Talking Points
July 15 - July 29, 2009

Two U.S. cabinet secretaries are visiting Beijing. On July 27, top Chinese leaders will come to Washington for the U.S.-China Strategic and Economic Dialogue. This is the latest evidence of the centrality and complexity of U.S.-China ties.

Commerce Secretary Gary Locke and Energy Secretary Steven Chu are in China. The focus of the visit is promoting innovation in and use of cleaner and more efficient energy technologies. The United States and China are the world’s two largest consumers of energy and the world’s largest emitters of greenhouse gases. The chart below shows energy consumption from 1990 and projected to 2020 . The U.S. consumes roughly twice as much energy as Chinese, but the U.S. Energy Information Agency projects the gap to narrow to about 10% by 2020. Of course, per capita energy consumption in the U.S. is roughly seven times per capita consumption in China.

The U.S. and Chinese governments both hope that increased use of renewable energy sources such as hydro, wind, and solar power will help with security and climate change mitigation efforts. The chart below shows the renewable share of Chinese energy consumption edging past that of the U.S., but both countries’ use levels out below world averages over the next decade.

On Wednesday, Sec. Locke praised China for planning to invest 40% of its $586 billion economic stimulus in “green projects.” Many analysts dispute this figure, but in any event, Sec. Locke is hopeful that American firms will be able to attract some of that business and other “green business” going forward. At the same time, the Secretary complained

“the United States and China’s trade relationship has to evolve. There are concerns and deep structural issues to be addressed.

“Chief among them is a bilateral trade imbalance that simply can't be sustained. Growth predicated on ever increasing Chinese exports being consumed by debt-laden Americans provided years of prosperity—but it also sowed some of the seeds for our current economic problems.”

At present, it seems unlikely that much of China’s renewable energy stimulus spending will go to American or other foreign firms. In May foreign firms were disqualified from bidding on 25 wind turbine contracts. And the trade deficit seems unlikely to be helped by wider U.S. adoption of solar energy. China is the top producer of solar panels, nearly all of which are exported.

Nonetheless, greater use of renewable energy reduces the strain on utilities to build more thermal or nuclear power plants and reduces carbon emissions. Toward that end, USC is the site for a US-Jiangsu Solar Business Summit tomorrow. The event is sponsored by the City of Los Angeles and the Jiangsu Provincial government and features presentations by top California and Jiangsu officials along with industry specialists. SunTech, the world’s largest producer of solar panels, is a Jiangsu giant and will be represented at the summit. Details about this meeting are below and at the calendar section of our website.

Please remember that you can keep track of news about these high profile government visits, the continuing economic challenges, and the situation in Xinjiang via the daily news updates section of the US-China Today magazine website. Foreign news organizations say that ethnic tensions remain, but the Chinese press describes the situation in Xinjiang now as calm and yesterday highlighted the Urumqi opening of Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince as evidence of a return to normalcy. Chinese authorities point to foreign forces (namely the U.S.-based World Uyghur Congress and Al-Qaeda) for the violence that took nearly 200 lives last week.

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The USC U.S.-China Institute
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07/17/2009: U.S. - Jiangsu China Solar Business Summit 2009
USC Davidson Conference Center
3415 F. Figueroa St., Los Angeles, CA 90089
Cost: $50
The summit will discuss China’s new national and provincial renewable energy policy and potential business opportunities.

07/27/2009: 2009 Summer Residential Seminar at USC 
USC, Davidson Conference Center
Los Angeles, CA 90089
For more information please visit:
An intensive nine-day equivalent of our "East Asia and New Media in My Classroom" professional development seminar for K-12 teachers employed outside of the greater Los Angeles area.


07/16/2009: The Silent Holy Stones
Pacific Asia Museum
46 North Los Robles Avenue, Pasadena, CA 91101
Phone: (626) 449-2742
Time: 8:00PM
A Chinese-produced film tracing the intermingling of native Tibetan culture with the influence of the outside world.

07/18/2009: Tenth Annual Overseas Chinese World Conference for the Peaceful Reunification of China
Pacific Palms Conference Resort
One Industry Hills Parkway, Industry Hills, CA 91744
Various scholars and community leaders will examine China's relationship with the U.S and the world.

North America  

07/17/2009 - 07/19/2009: Fifth Annual 21st Century China Symposium
University of Hawaii-Manoa
Phone: 808-261-9654
University of Hawaii-Manoa presents their fifth annual China symposium with the theme of increasing trust in US-China Relations, featuring keynote speaker Daniel Piccuta. 

07/21/2009: Taiwan's Quest for International Space
The Elliott School of International Affairs
1957 E Street, NW, 7th Floor, The City View Room
Cost: Free
The Sigur Center for Asian Studies presents a roundtable on Taiwan. 




04/25/2009 - 07/19/2009: Urban China: Informal Cities
Hammer Museum
10899 Wilshire Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90024
Phone: 310.443.7000
An exhibition that explores the dynamic and innovative content of Urban China.


02/10/2009 - 08/09/2009: Asian Journeys: Collecting Art in Post-war America
Asia Society and Museum
Address: 725 Park Avenue, New York, NY 10021
Phone: 212-517-ASIA
Asia Society and Museum in New York presents John D. Rockefeller 3rd's exceptional collection of Asian art, as well as that of their adviser Sherman E. Lee.

11/03/2008 - 11/03/2009: Ancient Arts of China: A 5000 Year Legacy
Bowers Museum
2002 North Main Street, Santa Ana, California 92706
Bowers Museum presents a collection that portrays the evolution of Chinese technology, art and culture. 

11/14/2008 - 11/14/2009: Chinese Art: A Seattle Perspective
Seatle Asian Art Museum
1400 East Prospect Street , Volunteer Park , Seattle, WA 98112–3303
The Seattle Asian Art Museum presents an opportunity to see a collection with representative works from each dynastic period. 

11/15/2008 - 11/15/2009: Masters of Adornment: The Miao People of China
Bowers Museum
2002 North Main Street, Santa Ana, California 92706
The Bowers Museum presents a collection of exquisite textiles and silver jewelry that highlights the beauty and wealth of the Miao peoples of southwest China. 

02/12/2009 - 02/12/2010: Art of Adornment: Tribal Beauty
Bowers Museum
2002 N. Main, Santa Ana, CA
Cost: $5
An exhibit featuring body adornments from indigenous peoples around the world


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