» 11/18/2008, 00.00
Corruption charges in China’s Environmental Protection Ministry
Two top officials are under investigation for “complacency” in approving environmental impact reviews. One of them is a close aide to Pan Yue, poster boy for the fight against industrial pollution.
For the first time court backs farmers’ case against police
In Zhejiang court sets landmark case against the police for failing to uphold farmers’ rights against polluting factories. Despite praise in legal circles for the decision, farmers still wonder who will pay for damages.
Chinese economic juggernaut among the last in environmental protection
In a recent report China is ranked 100 of 118 in terms of environmental protection. No progress has been registered in recent years despite Beijing’s promises. The central government is still unable to rein local government. A proposal is being floated to given more power to China’s environmental agency.
Local authorities and central bureaucracy against green GDP
The State Environmental Protection Administration (SEPA) insists economic growth data should include environmental and resource use costs. Local authorities are against, fearing that it might show lower growth rates. Bureaucratic infighting in Beijing is the result.
Company only fined for benzene slick in Songhua River
The company responsible for the 2005 environmental disaster that affected the Songha River (100 tonnes of benzene in the river) is ordered to pay maximum fine of one million yuan. But a year ago the court rejected a 10 billion yuan demand for damages to the environment.
Strict anti-pollution measures to save algae-infested lakes
Actions are taken to rescue three lakes invaded by algae over the past two months, a problem that has affected the drinking water of millions of people. Beijing is very concern that it might trigger social unrest. Experts say measures are insufficient because the problem affects the whole region. Environment agency and National Bureau of Statistics disagree over how to calculate pollution’s economic cost.
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