China creates judicial protection in a green push

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Guiyang has created an eco-court, an eco-procuratorial bureau and an eco-public security branch that is included in all three arms of the judicial structure in order to promote ecological progress.

Guiyang, the capital of an underdeveloped inland province, is leading the way in ecologically protective judicial systems. The court was initially established in 2007 and was the first of its kind. Now there are over 130 environmental courts nationwide as pollution and other environmental issues are becoming more prominent.

“Setting up specialized ecological courts could break the limitations of administrative areas and reduce interference from various parties,” said Luo Guangqian, the environmental court’s presiding judge.

In the past five years, the court had decided 619 environmental cases involving water, land and air pollution, punishing 477 polluters. Among them were 13 major public interest environmental litigation cases, which account for half of such cases nationwide.

“For a long time, China has mainly relied on administrative measures to manage and supervise environmental affairs and curb pollution,” said national legislator Wang Qingxi, noting that judicial forces have been playing a relatively minor role in environmental protection.


Featured image courtesy of [radiowood via Flickr]


Davis Truslow
Davis Truslow is a founding member of Law Street Media and a graduate of The George Washington University. Contact Davis at



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