Enforcement and Compliance News


  • China ‘doing better job at pollution control than developed countries’

    Mar 12 2016

    THERE will be no return to the era of pursuing economic growth at the expense of the environment, despite the slowing economy, China’s Minister of Environmental Protection Chen Jining said yesterday.

    For example, China would continue to restructure its economy away from heavily polluting companies and create more room for “good” companies to develop and focus on technological innovation, he said.

    However, there was a need to rein in local governments, some of whom are still reluctant to enforce environmental laws, favoring economic growth instead.

    “We need to hold local governments accountable,” said Chen.

    “Only if we hold them accountable for environmental...


  • Getting off scot-free: how CEOs survive environmental controversies unscathed

    Mar 12 2016

    Volkswagen announced on Wednesday that its top US boss, Michael Horn, would be leaving the company “effective immediately”, six months after the car giant’s global CEO resigned as the emissions cheating scandal became public. But a CEO losing his or her job following an environmental controversy is more the exception than the rule, according to a new study.

    The report, by researchers at Australia’s University of Adelaide, found that the heads of companies embroiled in environmental lawsuits tend to suffer little to no damage to their reputation. This is in contrast to CEOs of companies accused of financial fraud, who, according to prior research, are more likely to lose their jobs...


  • Getting off scot-free: how CEOs survive environmental controversies unscathed

    Mar 12 2016

    Volkswagen announced on Wednesday that its top US boss, Michael Horn, would be leaving the company “effective immediately”, six months after the car giant’s global CEO resigned as the emissions cheating scandal became public. But a CEO losing his or her job following an environmental controversy is more the exception than the rule, according to a new study.

    The report, by researchers at Australia’s University of Adelaide, found that the heads of companies embroiled in environmental lawsuits tend to suffer little to no damage to their reputation. This is in contrast to CEOs of companies accused of financial fraud, who, according to prior research, are more likely to lose their jobs...


  • China to complete environmental supervision reform in two years

    Mar 11 2016

    A new reform is in the works to ensure independent and effective law enforcement by local watchdogs in China, Minister of Environmental Protection Chen Jining said on Friday.

    The reform on law enforcement management of environmental watchdogs under the provincial level is aimed at tackling the intervention of local protectionism in environmental supervision and prompting local governments to assume their responsibilities in environmental protection, he said.

    A pilot program will be conducted within one year and the whole reform will be completed before 2018 when the incumbent cabinet's tenure comes to an end, Chen said at a press conference on the sidelines of the...


  • China Focus: Responsibility flows downstream for Chinese river chiefs

    Mar 11 2016

    GUIYANG, March 11 (Xinhua) -- District official Tang Youbo was surprised when he was bestowed with the title of River Chief for Sancha River, a tributary to the Yangtze River, China's longest.

    As head of the government of Pingba district, Anshun city, Tang is not only responsible for his own district, but now oversees the water quality of Sancha, 40 kilometers of which lies in his jurisdiction.

    "Once the water quality of Sancha drops, as a river chief, I am the first to bear the blame, regardless of who polluted the river," said Tang.

    China first adopted the practice of appointing local heads of government as Hezhang, or river chiefs, in 2007.

    The mechanism...


  • China’s environment chief touts ‘clean’ coal tech but admits people need to clean up their act too

    Mar 11 2016

    Environment Minister Chen Jining said China was spearheading efforts to promote cleaner use of coal, requiring coal power plants to cut emissions to about on par with using natural gas.

    But he admitted proper governance and supervision were key to achieving a clean environment.

    The mainland launched a nationwide programme at the end of last year to refit all coal-fired power plants with “ultra-low” emission technologies by 2020.

    “This will overturn many people’s belief that coal is dirty,” Chen told a press conference in Beijing on Friday.

    Coal has been increasingly blamed as a major contributor to the nation’s smog crisis as it accounts for more than 60 per...


  • Tackling Pollution in China's 13th Five Year Plan: Emphasis on Enforcement

    Mar 11 2016

    Air pollution continues to plague vast regions of China, but the country is making visible progress. In a press conference in Beijing this morning, Minister of Environmental Protection Chen Jining reported that average ambient levels of PM 2.5, the most dangerous air pollutant, were down by 14.1 percent in 74 key cities last year, the first year after China established a national PM 2.5 standard of 35 ug/m3. The Pearl River Delta region actually achieved overall compliance with the national standard. These results were corroborated by US NASA satellites, which observed apparent reductions of particulate matter in eastern and central China.

    There is still, however, a long way to go...


  • The EPA Reveals National Enforcement Initiatives Ahead of 2016 Election

    Mar 11 2016

    If you thought you had to wait until after the 2016 election to learn about the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) next iteration of National Enforcement Initiatives—think again. The EPA has announced that, as of Oct. 1, 2016, it will focus on two new enforcement initiatives (and expand one existing initiative) during the next three years. The agency also announced the continuation of four prior enforcement initiatives and the conclusion of its initiative for reducing pollution from mineral processing operations.

    Collectively, the new initiatives span four major environmental categories: air, energy extraction, hazardous chemicals and water. Focused enforcement in these areas...


  • Pollution control board agrees to upload all lake info online

    Mar 10 2016

    The Karnataka State Pollution Control Board (KSPCB) has promised to upload on its website information related to No Objection Certificates (NoCs) issued to industries and residential buildings, the list of members in its lake watchdog committee as well as real-time air and water quality analysis.

    It was an immediate assurance given by KSPCB Chairman Lakshman to lake conservationists and non- governmental organisations (NGO), which sought transparency in the board’s functioning at a meeting here on Wednesday.

    Prof Arbind Gupta from Save Bangalore Lakes Trust wanted to know the status of all private and public sewage treatment plants through which at least of half of the...


  • Poisar river’s pollution 100 times higher than safe limit

    Mar 10 2016

    The Poisar river, originating from the Sanjay Gandhi National Park, is polluted over 100 times the safety limit — making its water unsafe for human consumption and uninhabitable for both plant and animal life.

    Researchers working on the Nallah Restoration Report conducted biochemical oxygen demand (BOD) tests — an analysis aimed at determining the quantity of oxygen required by plants and animals for surviving in water — only to find that the number was as high as 414.73 mg per litre at certain locations along the seven-km river.

    The report was compiled by the Environmental Policy and Research India (EPRI) over 2014-15.

    Central Pollution Control Board guidelines...