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15 Jul 2013

Zhang Chun, China Dialogue

Cadmium Pollution in Yunnan Reopens Debate over Public Interest Litigation [China]

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After two years China’s first public interest lawsuit brought by NGOs [against Heping Technology and Luliang Chemicals for allegedly dumping 5,000 tonnes of cadmium waste in Luliang county] still has no result…Because the NGOs were unable to cover the high costs of appraising the harm done, the two parties opted for pre-trial mediation...[It] led legal experts to reconsider China’s public interest lawsuits…Hu Jing, a deputy professor…advocates learning from the US. He said that if, as in the US, lawsuits were brought by the environmental authorities, the collection of evidence and appraisals would be much easier and more forceful…The US Environmental Protection Agency…sues polluters [and] oversees clean-up…[In China] it seems difficult for the Ministry of Environmental Protection to bring cases…as “becoming the plaintiff indicates they have failed in their duties,.”.. [T]he new environmental public interest lawsuits tend to be about compensation for harm done, rather than removal of pollution and restoration of the environment...[Also refers to PPG]

Part of the following timelines

Luliang Chemical Industry & Peace Technology lawsuit (re heavy metal pollution in China)

Luliang Chemical Industry & Peace Technology lawsuit (re heavy metal pollution in China)