Orville Schell, Arthur Ross Director of the U.S.-China Center at Asia Society, has an article in The Atlantic discussing how a burgeoning "green movement" has affected Walmart's relationship with China. Are the world's most populous country and the world's largest corporation at the vanguard of a growing environmental movement? Schell isn't so sure:
Indeed, allowing, even encouraging, people to consume as much as they want, or can, has become one of the Chinese Communist Party’s key strategies for political legitimacy and social stability. Party leaders may label their version of development “scientific” or “sustainable,” but it’s still development. The bitter reality is that even if unrestrained consumerism becomes less environmentally destructive per unit of production than it was in the past, it is still unsustainable in the long run.
The article, entitled "How Walmart is Changing China," is featured in the print edition of the December 2011 issue of The Atlantic.