Keyword: Environment

10 Years on from the Ban on Free Plastic Bags

10 Years on from the Ban on Free Plastic Bags

A decade after the Chinese government took the step of banning free plastic shopping bags, a report by the Zero Waste Alliance looks at what has changed on the ground.

Let's visit Beijing's first eco-community!

Let’s visit Beijing’s first eco-community!

Recently many people have been posting articles about the most environmentally friendly village in Japan, Kamikatsu, saying wouldn’t it be good if there was something like this in China? Did you know that there is also an environmentally friendly village in Beijing? It’s Changping’s Xinzhuang Village (辛庄村). In this village, not only do they practice clean environmental protection and no littering, there is also a vegetarian restaurant and every first Saturday of the month there is an environmental market! Join us and experience the village with us! Guests are welcomed to the village to the sound of the African drum music which accompanies you around the market. Even though the market …read more

Multiple measures taken in Tibet to clean up the trash on Mount Everest

Multiple measures taken in Tibet to clean up the trash on Mount Everest

Since the beginning of this year, authorities in Tibet have taken multiple measures to remove the waste left by hikers on Mount Everest. From the 1950s onward, human activity in the Mount Everest area has led to the dumping of all kinds of rubbish, including food packages, bottles, tents, oxygen tanks and human faeces. According to the UNEP’s previous estimate, a few hundred tons of waste have been abandoned in the region. Nyima Cering, Deputy Director of the Tibetan Sports Administration, explained that with the popularization of mountain climbing and tourism, the already fragile  ecological system of the area is approaching its limit. An environmental protection squad has been set up by the administration …read more

Administrative detention of environmental protection worker Lei Ping officially withdrawn

Administrative detention of environmental protection worker Lei Ping officially withdrawn

On the 29th of May 2018, after environmental protection worker Lei Ping sued the Public Security Bureau of Xinyi city, in Guangdong province, for their decision to place her under 10-day administrative detention, it was announced that the police had withdrawn the decision, and the two parties had reached a settlement in court. Earlier this year Lei Ping, a volunteer with the China Biodiversity Conservation and Green Development Foundation (CBCGDF), was detained by the local police for “spreading rumors and disrupting public order” after she posted a report online about a local quarry polluting that was the environment. The news of her detention attracted public attention on the internet, and people …read more

Two Japanese NGOs working on desert greening in Inner Mongolia officially registered

Two Japanese NGOs working on desert greening in Inner Mongolia officially registered

The Inner Mongolian Administrative Office of Overseas NGOs presented two Japanese NGOs, the Ethics Research Institute and the Organization for Industrial, Spiritual and Cultural Advancement-International (一般社团法人伦理研究所 and 公益财团法人奥伊斯嘉), with their registration certificates. The director of the Administrative Office of Overseas NGOs and the director of the State Administration of Forestry of the Inner Mongolia autonomous region were both present and took part in the discussions. The director of the Administrative Office congratulated the two NGOs and expressed that the Inner Mongolian Administrative Office of Overseas NGOs would continue to offer their support and maintain good relations with foreign NGOs working in civil society in Inner Mongolia. He expressed his hope that …read more

Report shows Beijing public's environmental awareness growing

Report shows Beijing public’s environmental awareness growing

A think tank known as Tsingyan Research (清研智库) recently published a report on the Beijing Public’s Environmental Awareness from 2013 to 2017. The report claims that public environmental awareness, levels of environmental education and environmental responsibility have all increased.   According to the study, public knowledge of environmental issues and of ways to combat pollution has noticeably increased, and the public’s understanding of the causes of pollution has also become more objective. When asked about the causes of pollution, respondents stated that the increased pollution in autumn and winter is from “the increased use of heating mechanisms”, and stated “the increased pollution production is beyond the capacity of the environment”, “the lack of wind …read more

The Bulk House and China's Zero Waste Movement

The Bulk House and China’s Zero Waste Movement

The Zero Waste movement has a growing number of followers in China. A young entrepreneur has now opened a store that follows its principles in the centre of Beijing.

Shanghai's charity Walkathon commits to Zero Waste initiative

Shanghai’s charity Walkathon commits to Zero Waste initiative

The 8th annual E.G.G Walkathon (一个鸡蛋的暴走) took place in Shanghai on the 12th of May. This year nearly 4000 people took part in the 50 kilometre walkathon in aid of children’s charities in China. Over the previous seven years 43.48 million RMB has been raised for 264 children’s charities in 24 provinces, helping over 380,000 children. This year’s walkathon has already raised over 9.83 million RMB. Other than raising money for charity, this year’s Walkathon also committed to the practice of zero waste. Friends of Nature (自然之友), China’s oldest environmental NGO, partnered in carrying out the event’s waste management. According to data they provided, over the course of the walk more than 20 …read more

Shanghai trials plan for environmentally-friendly food deliveries

According to a Caixin report, the Shanghai Municipal Bureau of Quality and Technical Supervision issued a standard on April 27 requiring food delivery companies to use environmentally friendly laminated paper bowls, rather than plastic containers that degrade with difficulty. In addition, the delivery bags will also have to change: the standard provides three options for the food delivery companies to replace the traditional plastic bags, including paper bags, biodegradable bags and textile bags. The new standard was jointly drafted by the Shanghai Association of Food Contact Materials and major food delivery companies, including Meituan, Ele.me and Baidu Waimai. It was revised five times before being passed. After it is implemented, the …read more

Environmentalists tip-off authorities over toxic waste in Lanzhou

Environmentalists tip-off authorities over toxic waste in Lanzhou

It has transpired that a tip-off to the Lanzhou Municipal Environmental Protection Bureau (EPB) led a company to hastily dig up some industrial waste which they had dumped in a remote valley in Gansu province, the night after the tip-off was made. The industrial waste they dug up was made up of waste cathode carbon blocks, a vital component of electrolytic aluminium. According to the Directory of National Hazardous Waste 《国家危险废物名录》released by the Ministry of Environment Protection in 2016, the residue of electrolytic aluminium is categorized as “T”, meaning toxic. The tip-off was provided by Guan He, a member of the “fresh air guards” (好空气保卫侠), an environmental organization. After a first tip-off in September, …read more

Young Hong Kong man turns kitchen waste into beautiful natural dyes

Young Hong Kong man turns kitchen waste into beautiful natural dyes

A graduate of the Open University of Hong Kong who has turned more than six tons of food waste into natural dyes has recently been earning attention all over Hong Kong. Over the past seven years the graduate (named Eric) and a group of his friends have spent a lot of time collecting food waste, like rotten cabbages and leftover onions, at markets or grocery stores, and turning the waste into environmentally friendly dyes to create beautiful cloths. Having majored in environmental studies, Eric has always cared about the environmental issues around him, and he started to think about the problem of kitchen waste early in 2010. The enormous waste of food …read more

Singles' Day sales pass $25 billion mark, but worries expressed regarding its environmental effects

Singles’ Day sales pass $25 billion mark, but worries expressed regarding its environmental effects

This year the sales figures for China’s annual Singles’ Day have surpassed the $25 billion mark (168.2 billion yuan), making it the world’s largest retail event. Singles’ Day is held on November 11 every year, as the date 11/11 represents a collection of singles. The concept was originally started by university students, and it was meant for bachelors to buy themselves presents. It is now mainly promoted by Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba, which does not sell goods directly but offers a platform for online stores; other sprawling shopping platforms such as JD.com also join in the festival. During the 24-hour period, online businesses offer steep discounts for most of their products. …read more

The Shangri-La Institute for Sustainable Communities: an Interview with Lucy Binfield

The Shangri-La Institute for Sustainable Communities: an Interview with Lucy Binfield

An interview with Lucy Binfield from the Shangri-La Institute of Sustainable Communities, an NGO that works to promote education for sustainable development in China.

A perspective on China's ban on importing foreign waste

A perspective on China’s ban on importing foreign waste

This July, China announced a ban on the import of 24 types of solid waste by the end of the year, with the motivation of protecting its environmental interests and the public’s health. Three month into the new regulations, Hu Boyang from Narada Insight shared his perspective on the ban. China has been a top destination for waste for years, importing garbage from around the world for recycling to secure cheap commodities for manufacturers, at the risk however of severe environmental costs. To elaborate Hu takes Guiyu, the notorious E-Waste town in Guangdong, as an example: the considerable profits from the recycling of electronics has brought thousands of workshops to …read more

Tourists fined for chasing Tibetan antelopes in car

Tourists fined for chasing Tibetan antelopes in car

A few days ago, on October 6th, an internet user posted photos on Weibo showing two off-road vehicles chasing down a herd of Tibetan antelopes in the Gobi Desert. The accompanying post claimed that some of the animals had been killed or wounded. On October 8th the forestry department of the Tibetan Autonomous Region released the results of their investigation into this incident, and disclosed that each of the seven tourists involved had been fined 15,000 RMB, for a total of 105,000 RMB in fines. According to the investigation the group of selfish tourists entered a restricted area of the Siling Co national nature reserve, in order to take photos of …read more

Three food delivery companies make changes after being sued for polluting practices

Three food delivery companies make changes after being sued for polluting practices

On September 1st, the Beijing Fourth Intermediate People’s Court formally accepted a lawsuit by the Chongqing Green Volunteers Union (重庆市绿色志愿者联合会), suing three of China’s most popular food delivery service platforms, Baidu Food Delivery (百度外卖), Meituan Food Delivery (美团外卖) and Eleme Food Delivery (饿了么), for their environmentally harmful practices. In the lawsuit, the plaintiff appealed to the court to order the three companies to change their management model which damages the environment and wastes resources by providing every customer with disposable dishware and plastic bags, without asking them whether they need these products or not. The plaintiff claims that the three food delivery services should set options in their apps to allow …read more

Xinjiang announces plan to use renewable energy for heating

According to a report by the National Development and Reform Commission (发改委) of the Xinjiang Autonomous Region on August 31st, Xinjiang has completed its “Renewable energy clean heating program 2017-2021”. According to the plan, by 2021 heating from “surplus” renewable energy sources will cover around 38 million square meters across the whole of Xinjiang, and 1.17 million tons of standard coal will be saved by the use of this kind of heating. At present, Xinjiang provides heating to areas totalling around 675 million square meters, including 235 million square meters equipped with gas-fired boiler heating, 80 million square meters with heat and power combination heating, 177 million square meters with …read more

10 years since China’s ban on plastic bags, food delivery services now a major source of plastic waste

It has been almost 10 years since December 2007, when a ban on free plastic bags went into effect across China. An article has appeared on Chinese media outlet Ifeng, asking what the ban’s results have been. Observation reveals that there are still small supermarkets and shops that provide free plastic bags for their customers. The real issue however is that the break-neck development of food delivery services and online shopping in recent years has created a major new source of plastic pollution. The huge popularity of food delivery services in Chinese cities represents a particular environmental headache. Most of the take-out lunch boxes are made of non-degradable materials, which increases …read more