How China's Belt and Road could help or hurt the oceans

THE MARITIME EXECUTIVE | 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 $8 trillion. But what about the environmental cost?


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