As China Confronts Pollution, Gadgets Will Cost More

The good news is that the Chinese government is addressing its pollution problem; the bad news is that we'll be paying more for our tech devices. (Image credit: Sheila/Flickr)

Facing an epic pollution battle, the Chinese government has begun taking concrete steps to lessen the country's mark on the environment, but the West will feel a little squeeze as prices for smart phones, tablets, laptops and other devices increase.

So far, over 80,000 factories have been found to break the rules on emissions. Fines and even criminal proceedings have been set in motion for some of the worst offenders.

In order for factory inspections to occur, facilities must shut down production:

Offline production lines mean orders aren't fulfilled, manufacturing is delayed, and shortages occur. And when there's a shortage we ultimately see prices increase.

The possibility exists that prices could stay up in the future, as companies will incur costs to comply with tighter regulations:

Longer term, stricter regulation will cause a headache for Chinese factory owners who will have to deal with their emissions in an environmentally-friendly way. In other words, running production lines will incur more costs and those costs will be passed on to customers.