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Showing 9 posts in China.

China Announces Action Plan to Tackle Soil Pollution

On May 31, China’s State Council released a nationwide Action Plan for Soil Pollution Prevention and Control (“Action Plan”). The Action Plan, whose implementation will be led by the Ministry of Environmental Protection (“MEP”), calls for the establishment of laws to monitor, prevent, and remediate soil pollution, and aims to incrementally improve soil quality across the country by mid-century. Specifically, the plan aims to make 90% of polluted arable land safe for human use by 2020, and increases that target to 95% by 2030.[1] Read More ›

China’s 13th Five-Year Plan Sets Caps for Water Consumption, Energy Consumption, and Carbon Emissions

Summary: On March 5, Premier Li Keqiang delivered China’s 13th Five Year Plan (FYP13) to the 12th National People’s Congress.[1] Adopted on March 16, the FYP13 gives top priority to economic development and projects a moderately prosperous GDP growth rate of 6.5%-7% for the next five-year period. At the same time, the FYP13 caps carbon emissions and energy and water consumption, and sets forth clear goals for overhauling or eliminating inefficient, outdated, or overcapacity industries and production facilities, increasing renewable energy production, and developing green infrastructure. Read More ›

Two Chinese Public Interest Groups Win Landmark Environmental Lawsuit in China

In a seminal judicial decision, a court in China’s Fujian province ruled on October 29, 2015 in favor of two environmental NGOs who brought suit against four defendants under China’s revised Environmental Protection Law for causing environmental damage associated with an unapproved quarry.  Read More ›

China Demonstrates Increasing Commitment to Addressing Climate Change and Air Pollution Challenges

In the past few weeks, China has taken major steps to revamp its air pollution and climate change policies, domestically and internationally. On September 25, 2015, China entered into a Joint Statement with the United States (“Joint Statement” or “Statement”) announcing shared goals for the upcoming December 2015 Paris Conference (“Paris Conference” or “COP 21”) under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (“UNFCCC”).[1] As part of the Joint Statement, China also announced commitments to enact domestic climate policy changes, including its intent to implement a nationwide carbon emissions trading program by 2017. This announcement builds on last year’s Joint Statement issued by the two nations announcing their commitment to addressing climate challenges, including the goal that China’s carbon dioxide emissions would peak in 2030. Read More ›

China’s International and Domestic Climate Change Policies: An Overview Leading up to Paris

In June, China submitted its climate policy pledges to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (“UNFCCC” or “Convention”) for the December 2015 Paris Climate Conference (“COP 21” or the “2015 Paris Conference”).  These pledges, known as Intended Nationally Determined Contributions (“INDCs”), are the vehicle through which the Parties submit their intended commitments for the post-2020 period.  Significantly, the 2015 Paris Conference may well generate the first binding international climate commitments for China.  This article provides an overview of China’s stance coming into the Paris talks as well as its domestic climate change policies, which together represent China’s efforts to enact a comprehensive national climate change policy. Read More ›

China’s Top Court Clarifies Environmental Tort Liability Standards

On June 1, 2015, China’s Supreme People’s Court (“SPC”) issued an interpretation, The SPC Interpretation on Several Questions Concerning Applicable Law in the Adjudication of Environmental Tort Liability Dispute Cases (“Interpretation”),[1] clarifying key principles in environmental tort cases.  The Interpretation became effective on June 3, 2015 and governs certain civil lawsuits with underlying claims stemming from environmental pollution and ecological damage.[2]  The Interpretation reflects the SPC’s most recent effort to unify standards for Chinese courts to adjudicate environmental tort claims from several widely applicable statutes.  The key elements of the Interpretation are set forth below. Read More ›

China Proposes “RoHS 2” Framework for Comment

On May 15, 2015, China’s Ministry of Industry and Information Technology
(“MIIT”) released a latest Draft for Comments (“May 2015 Draft”) of the “Management
Methods for the Restriction of the Use of Hazardous Substances in Electrical and
Electronic Products
” (“Methods”) (Draft for Comments in Chinese). The new
Methods is designed to replace the existing regime, promulgated in 2006
and commonly referred to as “China RoHS.” The May 2015 Draft is now open for
public comments until June 17, 2015. It makes several important proposed changes
to the existing China RoHS regulation. Read More ›

China Announces New Comprehensive Water Pollution Control Plan

The State Council of China has published an ambitious plan to reverse the deterioration of water quality and improve management of water resources throughout China.  The Action Plan for Water Pollution Prevention (the “Plan”) sets progressive goals over the next five, fifteen, and thirty-five years, and provides a wide-ranging policy agenda that includes stricter regulation of industry effluent discharges, combined with, among other things, market-based incentives, investment in new water treatment facilities, and promotion of more efficient and cleaner technologies.  While it remains to be seen how much of this aggressive agenda will be realized within the timeframes envisioned by the Chinese government, the Plan promises a radical transformation of water quality regulation in the country with potentially significant consequences for various segments of the industrial sector. Read More ›

China Proposes Framework for Public Participation in Environmental Policymaking, Enforcement

China’s Ministry of Environmental Protection (MEP) has proposed “Measures for Public Participation in Environmental Protection (Trial)” (Measures), which lay out a variety of mechanisms for public participation in environmental lawmaking, policy, and enforcement. The proposed Measures characterize the (1) activities in which the MEP and other environmental protection departments (“departments”) would seek public participation, (2) mechanisms for public participation, and (3) manner in which the public may participate in environmental oversight and enforcement. The MEP solicited comments on the Measures through April 20, 2015. Read More ›