MANILA, April 25 (UPI) -- A side effect of the growing Asian economy is the degradation of air quality and long-term problems related to climate change, the Asian Development Bank said.
The Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries, in its April report, said growth in gross domestic product in China slowed from 9.4 percent in 2011 to 7.8 percent in 2012. Nevertheless, the report said that "the recovery in the Chinese economy will continue in 2013."
ADP President Haruhiko Kuroda said Asia continues to be the leader in economic growth despite the slowdown. He cautioned regional leaders to "remain vigilant" as other challenges complicate economic planning.
Kuroda said the most visible side effect of economic growth has been environmental damage.
"The reliance on fossil fuels has degraded air quality and ecosystems, reduced the supply of clean water and created significant health hazards," Kuroda said in a statement.
OPEC said the largest portion of growth in oil demand for 2013 will be from China.
He added that Asian economies together make up the single largest source of global greenhouse gas emissions and its cities are among the most polluted in the world.