Researchers examining regulatory enforcement have found that enforcement styles tend to be contextually determined in Western countries, which has resulted in a divergence in regulatory approach at both the national and local levels. Given the dearth of regulation research in non-democratic regimes, this paper makes an initial attempt to fill the gap by studying the impact of regional variations in regulatory enforcement in China. Accordingly, the effects of external support and organizational factors on the preferences for enforcement styles of environmental officials in three Chinese regions were examined. It was found that the strength of these influences on enforcement style dimensions is more variable than was anticipated. Generally, the patterns of relationships for Guangzhou and Chengdu were similar, while those for Dalian appear to reflect its unique environmental, economic and political conditions. Public support appears to promote several dimensions of enforcement style (i.e., education, prioritization, coercion) in Guangzhou and Chengdu; however, in Dalian the influence of government was greater than that of public support. The effects of internal factors were even more variable and probably reflect unique characteristics and priorities within each agency. Overall, the results suggest that caution is warranted when interpreting current findings about China that have used samples from a single region and that enforcement agency directors in nondemocratic regimes must take into account a complex array of contextual factors in attempting to promote a particular style of enforcement.