Nankai University Students Visit CBCGDF to Discuss Environmental Public Interest Litigation (2): The Guardian
2019/7/9 16:27:00 本站

Recently, three law undergraduates from Nankai University visited China Biodiversity Conservation and Green Development Foundation (CBCGDF) to investigate and research environmental public interest litigation (EPIL). Dr. Zhou Jinfeng, Secretary-General of CBCGDF, met them in person and introduced CBCGDF's efforts in promoting EPILs. The interview summarized by these students is shared as follows. At the same time, we welcome more students to visit CBCGDF to learn about EPIL.


The Guardian


By Gou Xiaodan (Nankai University)


It is stifling in Beijing at the end of June. Wandering in the forest of intensively arranged buildings, I was punched by the hot wave mixed with vehicle exhaust and hubbubs. I felt like being trapped in a huge boiler without a way out. Street trees seemed listless in the harsh sunlight.


As we have carried out in-depth research of EPIL and kept amending the project proposal, the more confusions and questions pop up. We realize that we are restricted by idle theorizing on paper, and it is time to make field research.


Walking on the street makes me feel like hobbling in the desert. Finally, we arrived at the office of CBCGDF and then knocked on the door.


The staff led us to the meeting room. As the leaders of CBCGDF, Dr. Zhou and Ms. Zhang Na gave us a fascinating lecture. I have no idea of what they contribute to the world, but I will keep the names of these proctor of the earth firmly in my mind after today’s interview.


Ms. Zhang Na, Director of Legal Affairs Department of CBCGDF, is a capable woman. As the leader of this core department, Ms. Zhang Na has attended numerous court hearings of EPIL. In court, she defends public interest with logical presentation and unambiguous evidence.


She talked about how to deal with professional problems in the process of investigation and evidence collection, helped us to distinguish prosecution in criminal proceedings, a reflection of from public opinions and the sharing of various expenditures for identification. She talked about the importance of developing strong psychological endurance when collecting evidence. She and her colleagues were once hiding at the pollution source to shoot with the fear of being found by enterprises. She talked about the legislation and implementation of Environmental Protection Law, and incomprehension caused by judges' stereotype, and the difficulties brought out by electric annual report and the controversy over whether CBCGDF has rights to file cultural relics public interest litigation. When mentioning the high cost of EPILs, she expressed her determination to stick it out.


Dr. Zhou Jinfeng, Secretary General of CBCGDF, is gracious, and he has worked here for five years, gaining rich experience. He shared his views and experience in environmental protection to us.


He introduced the environmental public interest litigation-Tengger Desert Pollution, local government’s query on CBCGDF’s legitimate suitability to file the litigation, information collection, investigation of the pollution source with reporters of Topics in Focus at night, and the battle with wisdom with pollution enterprises. What they have done is not an ordinary work…

In addition to the tough condition and the particularity of the work, this job brings happiness. He introduced the successful rescue of pangolins even they have little experience, which greatly reduces the mortality of confiscated pangolins. He introduced how they promote food delivery platforms like Eleme to reduce the use of disposable chopsticks and plastic bags by litigation. He introduced how the volunteers to fight and voice for nature…


 Since the reform and opening up, the whole society has been developed in industrialized civilization.”

 You could ask villagers- when they were young, water was available by digging 5 meters underground, but now there is no water even drilling 10 meters, 50 meters, and 100 meters. As technology advances, someone would drill 150 meters to dig a well."

 We have been talking about inter-generation equity, but the Earth Overshoot Day (EOD) has been earlier than expected every year. The EOD of 2018 is in August, and that of this year is expected in June.”

 It is estimated that about one million species would go extinct in ten years.”

Our funds are formed public donation, so we are faced with various challenges, like uncompetitive salary, intense working pressure, potential risks, and high labor turnover.

 Why did you choose this industry (public interest)?”

 It was a sheer coincidence.”

 Why do you and your team stick to (biodiversity conservation and green development)?”

 It matters because it is about national development. Someone has to do this.”


The ecological undertaking has gone through ups and downs, and no one knows what it would be in the future. But there are people who devoted themselves entirely to the career no matter how terrible the environment. Someone has to shoulder the responsibility. Luckily, we have protectors like those of CBCGDF.


(Photo credit: CBCGDF)

Original Chinese article:

By / Wang Yanqing