China Daily carries a summary of the Chinese Academy of Sciences‘ new “Outline for China’s Sustainable Development,” which predicts Chinese people will live to 85 on average by 2050 (roughly 13 years longer than they live now). According to the report, the average Chinese will also be in school for twice as long and spend less than half as much on food as they do at present
In it’s own coverage of the report, Reuters points out one of the researchers’ more loaded claims: All households will be lifted out of poverty by the middle of the century.
Also noteworthy is China Daily’s candor in relaying the report’s warnings about stumbling blocks on the way to this happy future:
China has to overcome a lot of barriers, said Niu Wenyuan, executive editor-in-chief of the report, who is also CAS’ chief scientist for sustainable development.
The biggest challenges include the huge population, limited energy and resources, deteriorating environment, the widening urban-rural gap, and a lack of social equality. [Full Text]
Neither Reuters nor China Daily ask what the new life expectancy predictions will mean for China’s already worrying demographic imbalance.