New Frontlines in China’s War on Pollution: Expanding Government and NGO Efforts to Protect Water | Wilson Center

 

China-water

In the fifth year of China’s War on Pollution, the government is moving the frontlines beyond urban air pollution, targeting protection of water and soil. From a new national pollution survey to increasing crackdowns on polluting industries and illegal mining that contaminate water and soil, China’s new Ministry of Ecology and Environment is flexing its muscles. Domestic civil society environmental groups and international NGOs are also taking advantage of increasing space to monitor, sue, and partner with Chinese companies to reign in water pollution.

At this May 23rd CEF meeting, we welcome four speakers who will explore new government and civil society engagements to keep pollution and degradation of China’s vulnerable rivers, lakes and groundwater in check.

Drawing on insights from a study of twenty-seven environmental NGOs from fifteen different provinces in China, Dr. Kathinka Fürst of Duke Kunshan University will outline the roles NGOs in China play in the regulation of industrial pollution and what they mean for civil society development overall in China. Next, Ilch Yiliqi will highlight how the NRDC’s Clean by Design green supply efficiency program has succeeded in partnering with Chinese and international companies to reduce industrial pollution and energy use in China’s apparel and footwear industry. Hu Min will detail how the Chengdu Urban River Association is working with citizens to map out and monitor Chengdu’s black and filthy rivers in order to improve the quality of drinking water.  Lastly, Lanzhou-based environmental lawyer Allen Shi from Lanzhou New Green Environment research Institutewill talk about the longer-term local and national impacts of the central government’s protection of the Qilian Mountain reserve.

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