Administrative Law

Download Environmental Litigation in China: A Study in Political by Rachel E. Stern PDF

By Rachel E. Stern

This can be a booklet concerning the unbelievable: looking felony aid for pollutants in modern China. In a rustic recognized for tight political keep watch over and ineffectual courts, Environmental Litigation in China unravels how daily justice works: how judges make judgements, why legal professionals take situations, and the way overseas effect issues. it's a readable account of the way the leadership's combined indications and political ambivalence play out at the floor - propelling a few, equivalent to the village medical professional who fought a chemical plant for greater than a decade, whilst others again clear of possibility. but this extraordinary ebook exhibits that even in a rustic the place expectancies will be that legislation would not a lot subject, environmental litigation offers a sliver of area for lawyers to discover new roles and, in so doing, probe the boundary of what's politically attainable.

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For an overview of these pieces of legislation, see McElwee (2011, 60–65). 32 For more on the revisions to the Air Pollution Law, see Alford and Liebman (2002). For more on the national law-making process in general, see McElwee (2011, 34–50). 33 State Environmental Protection Agency, 11th Five-Year Law Plan on National Environmental Protection Laws and Regulations. Document on file with the author. POST-MAO 39 Convention. Despite obvious gaps, such as the lack of a law requiring polluters to restore the environment, law on the books had improved such that some observers could plausibly credit China with “an admirable set of environmental laws” (Stalley 2010, 22).

The Growth of Legal Institutions Number of judges Number of lawyers Number of procuratorate staff Number of law firms Number of law schools & departments Start of reforms 2000s 60,439 (1981) 8,571 (1981) 97,330 (1986) 79 (1979) less than 15 (1978) 189,531 (2009) 195,170 (2010) 223,334 (2010)4 17,230 (2010) 634 (2008) Sources: Zou (2006, 14); Zhu (2007, 273); Chen (2008, 167 and 169); Xinhua (2009a); Ji (2010, 299); China Law Yearbook (2011, 1054 and 1067). In the 1990s, growing high-level support for law paralleled efforts to recentralize political power.

Getting a Case into Court In environmental disputes, even getting a day in court is a hard-won privilege. Under the Environmental Protection Law, would-be plaintiffs have three years from when they became aware of pollution-related losses to file a claim. Sometimes, as in the Pingnan case, the court counts time spent seeking administrative solutions against the statute of limitations – a real problem when bureaucracies move slowly or fail to act altogether (Wang 2007, 210). The right to sue, a legal concept known as standing, is also limited to those who have directly suffered harm.

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