China Environment Events

A Way Toward a Super Ministry? A Case Study of Environmental Protection Administrative System Reform in China - Co-Sponsored with the World Bank

March 27, 2012 // 12:30pm2:00pm
China Environment Forum
China has made significant progress in building an administrative system for environmental protection from nil over the past 40 years. The most recent reform of the government organization at the national level in 2008 was guided by the concept of establishing a system of “super-ministries” with comprehensive functions so as to trim the size of the government and improve efficiency. As part of this, the then-State Environmental Protection Administration (SEPA) was upgraded to the level of a full ministry with a cabinet position on the State Council, renamed the Ministry of Environmental Protection (MEP). But the nation still is confronted by serious and growing environmental problems that require further significant advances. Based on the results of a World Bank Technical Assistance, the presentation will examine the current situation and problems with the administrative system for environmental protection, review past government administrative reforms and international experience, and set out a series of recommendations for the future reform of the national-level administrative system for environmental protection in six main areas - roles and responsibility of government agencies, environmental laws, a national coordination and decision making body, MEP organizational structure, supervision of local governments, and capacity building.

Film Screening: The Warriors of Qiugang

March 21, 2012 // 12:00pm1:15pm
China Environment Forum
Villagers in central China confront a chemical company that is poisoning their land and water in this rare portrait of grassroots activism in contemporary China. When his own fields could no longer be farmed, Zhang Gongli filed a lawsuit against the polluting factory. After he lost, he initiated a stubborn, and often dangerous, campaign for justice. The Warriors of Qiugang follows Zhang and his allies in the village as they petition Beijing, recruit support from the local media, reach out for help from a local NGO and make contact with environmental activists from across China. The film’s intimacy leads us beyond the headlines and clichés about modern China and offer a memorable portrait of villagers wrestling with, and transformed by, China’s headlong rush into modernity. In Chinese, with English subtitles, the movie was directed by Ruby Yang and produced by Thomas Lennon. It was the 2011 Academy Award Nominee for Documentary Short Film.
Webcast
Podcast

Stepping Lighter? Environmental and Social Impacts of China’s Overseas Oil, Mineral, and Gas Investments

January 13, 2012 // 10:00am12:00pm
China Environment Forum
To get the New Year rolling here at the Wilson Center, we start off with a CEF meeting on Friday January 13th (10:00-12:00) discussing the drivers and ecological impacts of China’s overseas investments in the oil and mining sectors. Our three speakers—Erica Downs (Brookings); Adina Matisoff (Friends of Earth); and Derek Scissors (The Heritage Foundation)—will share case studies and insights into Chinese investments in oil and minerals, as well as trends in China Development Bank loans and the financing of energy projects overseas.

China’s Threatened Waters: Video Series Screening and Discussion on Wetland Destruction and Other Vulnerable Waterways in China

November 07, 2011 // 3:00pm5:00pm
China Environment Forum
As a result of China’s rapid economic growth in recent decades, coupled with climate change, vast swathes of China’s wetlands have now disappeared. These changes are having serious consequences for the millions of people who rely on these sources of water and also severely affecting the flora and fauna of these regions, pushing many to the brink of extinction. Photographer and videographer Sean Gallagher spent 2010 traveling thousands of kilometers across China for the Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting and Asia Society’s China Green, to document the diverse impacts of wetlands disappearance across the breadth of the country. We will screen some of Sean’s wetland videos. Following the screening of the short wetland videos and Sean’s comments, Zhao Zhong will talk about some of the successes and challenges to the campaigns and programs his NGO have conducted in northern China to protect wetlands and rivers from pollution.
Webcast

Report Launch: The World’s Water, Vol. 7

October 18, 2011 // 10:00am12:00pm
Environmental Change and Security Program
Peter Gleick and colleagues find that more and more regions of the world, the United States included, may be reaching the point of “peak water.” To conserve this critical resource without harming the economy or public health, individuals are looking for new techniques in sustainable water management.
Webcast

Scrambling for Hydropower in the Himalayas

September 26, 2011 // 9:00am11:00am
China Environment Forum
The Third Pole – an area of the Himalayas and Tibetan plateau and home to the largest reserve of fresh water outside the Arctic and Antarctic – is a region familiar to both earthquakes and dam projects. This irreconcilable reality is at the center of an emerging debate, raising environmental and security concerns as regional governments scramble for clean energy resources and control over a precious water source.

Collaboration with Taiwan to Address Regional Environmental Challenges

August 11, 2011 // 10:30am11:30am
China Environment Forum
Come join the Wilson Center's China Environment Forum and Asia Program for a conversation with Taiwan's Minister of Environmental Protection, Dr. Stephen Shu-Hung Shen, to learn about work the EPA and Taiwan have been doing since 2010 to engage regional partners to advance global capacity in the remediation of contaminated sites, e-waste recycling and management, and reduction of air pollution and greenhouse gas emissions from ports.
Webcast

Dams and Sustainability in China

July 26, 2011 // 9:00am11:00am
China Environment Forum
Dams, dams, and more dams! China is home to roughly half the world's large dams, and hydropower is set to play a key role in helping China meet its 2020 carbon intensity reduction commitments. Dozens of new large hydro projects are underway across the southwestern part of the country, where steep mountains and big rivers mean great hydro potential. Yet many of those projects are in culturally or ecologically sensitive areas that are home to large concentrations of ethnic minorities, and may involve trans-boundary rivers – all of which bring the long-term sustainability of the projects to the fore.

Averting Toxic Disasters in China

June 23, 2011 // 9:00am11:00am
China Environment Forum
Over the past several years, the Chinese news media has been more active in reporting on lead poisoning cases and cadmium contamination in food. Overall, however, the magnitude of China's toxic pollution problems is not very well understood, which hinders the search for solutions. For example, China uses and releases more mercury than any other country in the world.

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