This is a great cause - Nankai University students visiting the CBCGDF to discuss environmental public interest litigation (3)
2019/7/8 10:15:00 本站

Recently, three law undergraduates from Nankai University came to the China Biodiversity Conservation and Green Development Foundation (CBCGDF) to investigate and research environmental public interest litigation. Dr. Zhou Jinfeng, Secretary-General of the CBCGDF, personally received three students and introduced the work related to the environmental public interest litigation of the CBCGDF. At the same time, we welcome students from all campuses to come to the CBCGDF to discuss the work related to environmental public interest litigation.


Visiting CBCGDF - It's a Great Cause

Wang Jing Nankai University


From the preparation of research projects on environmental public interest litigation in winter vacation to the establishment of projects, during this period, and teammates read a lot of related papers, but it is really the first time to enter the environmental public interest organizations to understand the reality.


Today, I came to CBCGDF. After an in-depth conversation with the Secretary-General of the CBCGDF and Director Zhang Na of the law department, I found that there are still many gaps between the "situation" I learned from the Internet and the papers and the reality. I read the papers before that I thought I had a full recognition of the problem of proof of environmental public welfare organizations in environmental public interest litigation. Knowing that the problems, in reality, are more complicated and difficult than those in the papers, it is really needing to be practiced.


There has always been thought that the difficulty of environmental public interest organizations to bring environmental public interest litigation lies in the allocation of the burden of proof, such as the inversion of the burden of proof, but it is more difficult to obtain evidence. I was shocked to hear from the Secretary-General of the CBCGDF and Director Zhang Na about the experience of volunteers in the process of collecting evidence. Volunteers from all over the country run around in order to protect the environment and deal with environmental pollution and ecological damage as soon as possible, even facing personal danger, but they still insisted on this cause. Make every effort to make the environment better. What is more shocking is that the cost and expense of CBCGDF in every environmental public interest lawsuit cost about 1 million yuan on average. As a public welfare organization, every penny comes from people's donation. Therefore, only through saving funds and obtain funds from project departments in order to further engage in environmental public interest litigation. Although the new "Environmental Protection Law", "Civil Procedure Law" and the judicial interpretation of the Supreme People's Court on environmental civil public interest litigation have been promulgated, there are still many obstacles for environmental organizations to initiate public interest litigation. For example, Article 2 of the Environmental Protection Law stipulates that the definition of environment includes cultural relics, and when the CBCGDF initiates public interest litigation for the protection of cultural relics, it still be challenged by the courts, judges and the defendants; Shijiazhuang Intermediate People’s Court refuses to comply with the law, and so on. In today's difficult situation, CBCGDF will persist in this cause and the role of public welfare organizations. 


With the development of society and the expansion of the scope of environmental protection, besides continuing to bring public interest litigation on environmental pollution and ecological damage, the CBCGDF also pays attention to these more special environmental public interest litigation related to tobacco control and cultural relics and promotes the environmental public interest litigation continuously.


Environmental public interest litigation is a key link in China's environmental governance and sustainable development, as well as an important part of the construction of a country ruled by law, which is full of obstacles in many aspects. I admire that CBCGDF has done such a great job during such a difficult period, and I am also proud that so many volunteers are running around to collect evidence to protect the environment. This Conversation with the CBCGDF gave me a deeper understanding of environmental public litigation, and also realized that besides the paper, practice is the more important way to acquire knowledge. In the future, we will pay more attention to the practical activities of environmental organizations to guide our academic research and practice more closely, and actively participate in environmental protection public welfare activities as a qualified citizen, so as to shoulder our environmental protection responsibilities.


(Photo credit: CBCGDF)

Original Chinese article:

By / Li Xue