案例摘要:陆良化工、和平科技诉讼案(有关云南铬渣污染)

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2011年9月19日,中国环保非政府组织自然之友、重庆市绿色志愿者联合会因导致当地居民癌症患病比率畸高的铬渣污染向云南省曲靖市中级人民法院 起诉云南省陆良化工有限公司和云南省和平科技有限公司(该公司被指为陆良化工的关联企业)。有中国的环境法专家认为该案是中国首例由非政府组织提起的环境 公益诉讼,具有里程碑的意义。

本案原告认为两被告公司对铬渣排放造成的污染应承担连带责任。他们要求判令两被告公司停止违法堆存铬渣、消除已倾倒和堆存的铬渣污染危害、赔偿环境损失,以及设立专项资金账户治理和恢复生态环境。

陆良化工认为原被告双方在解决环境污染上目的一致,但当地铬渣污染具有历史原因,不应由其承担赔偿所有损害的责任。陆良化工指出,1989年陆良成立了第一家化工厂,而该厂2003年被陆良化工收购以前就已经存放了284,400吨铬渣。

2011年10月19日,法庭受理了本案。原来本案的第三人曲靖市环保局变更为共同原告。

2012年本案原被告在法院的主持下进行调解,并于同年12月达成调解协议。根据协议,被告将限期治理铬渣污染、对铬渣进行无害化处理并停止外排。然而,2013年4月18日,被告正式向法庭表示拒绝签署调解书。本案即将进入庭审程序。

此前,陆良化工曾被曲靖市麒麟区法院判处对非法倾倒铬渣导致污染的行为承担责任。它被发现在曲靖市内非法倾倒铬渣5000余吨,并在南盘江水源附近 露天堆放28.84万吨铬渣。2012年5月15日包括陆良化工雇员和承运人在内七名犯罪嫌疑人因非法倾倒铬渣被曲靖市麒麟区判决有罪。

- “Cadmium pollution in Yunnan reopens debate over public interest litigation”, Zhang Chun, China Dialogue, 15 Jul 2013
- “Talks Begin in Landmark NGO Environment Case”,Cao Yin & Guo Anfei,China Daily,24 May 2012

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作者: Zhang Chun, China Dialogue

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]

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作者: Cao Yin & Guo Anfei, China Daily

Lawsuit could mark first time NGOs file public litigation on environment [in China]…The three plaintiffs - Friends of Nature, Chongqing Green Volunteers Union and the Qujing city environmental protection bureau - exchanged evidence with Luliang Chemical Industry, the defendant…said Chang Cheng…of Friends of Nature…Luliang Chemical Industry is accused of discharging more than 5,000 metric tons of highly toxic heavy metal in three townships of Qujing…in 2011. The company did not comment on the case...

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作者: Sui-Lee Wee, Reuters

Nothing in Wu Wenyong’s rural childhood hinted he would end up on a hospital bed aged 15, battling two kinds of cancer…3 km…from Wu’s home stands a three-story high hill of chromium slag produced from the Yunnan Luliang Peace Technology Company. The runoff from chromium-6, listed as a carcinogen by the World Health Organization, seeped into the Nanpan, turning its waters yellow…[A] coalition of environmental advocacy groups, who have filed a public interest lawsuit for residents of Xiaoxin and nearby Xinglong in a special environment court…The groups want the privately owned company to establish a 10 million yuan ($1.6 million) compensation fund for an environmental clean-up…The company declined Reuters’ request for an interview… In September, the local government arrested five people for the dumping and ordered the company to halt production of chromium and sodium dichromate...Li said he was “cautiously optimistic” about prospects for victory in the Qujing case — which he said he had raised in his discussions with the government.

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作者: Want China Times [Taiwan]

Officials in southern China have denied reports that [Heping] chemical plant which was ordered to shut down after heavy metal waste killed dozens of farm animals had resumed operations…The plant suspended its production in August by order of the Ministry of Environmental Protection...The company started detoxifying hazardous chromium residues in late September and will begin operations in a second waste processing facility in the first half of 2012, according to China Daily…[T]he chromium-contaminated waste has still been piled around the site without safeguards against seepage and has thus threatened water and soil... Xinhua reported that the plant had apparently started up again according to local residents and its own reporters, triggering speculation that it had resumed production in defiance of its ban…

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