||This dissertation is to theoretically and empirically explore how development impacts the environment in the largest developing country in the world from the perspective of sociology of development, and environmental and urban sociology. This dissertation focuses on the context of China, reviews the development trajectories adopted during the past more than six decades, and presents the spatial and temporal pattern of environmental degradation across regions and over time. Then, this dissertation empirically examines the relationship between development and environmental degradation answering the following questions: (1) whether economic development level is positively or negatively associated with air and water pollution; (2) whether industrialization, urbanization and globalization (international trade and Foreign Direct Investment inflows) are positively or negatively associated with air and water pollution; (3) how the impact has changed across regions and over time; and (4) how the sources of foreign capital have differentially affected environmental pollution across cities and over time. The dissertation presents how economic development level (GDP per capita as the indicator), globalization, industrialization and urbanization have impact on air and water pollution respectively across regions and over time, and examines whether globalization, industrialization and urbanization serves as the pathways in the association between development and environmental pollution in such a rapid economy with the most population in the world. Multilevel modeling is used to analyze the longitudinal data at the city level from 2004 to2013. The findings confirm that there is inverted-U shape only between economic development and SO2 emission (not for dust emission or water pollution), indicating whether Environmental Kuznets Curve (EKC) holds depending on the specific indicators of environmental degradation analyzed. More importantly, the results show that industrialization and urbanization are more likely to positively impact air pollution, while there is no strong evidence supporting that globalization has impact on air pollution. Meanwhile, industrialization and globalization are more likely to positively impact water pollution, while population density is negatively associated with water pollution.