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ENVIRONMENTAL REVIEWS AND CASE STUDIES: “Environmental Protection Bureau, 2.0”: China's Environmental Courts as Enforcement Institutions

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  21 January 2014

Daniel J. Knudsen*
Affiliation:
Yale Law School, J.D. 2012, New Haven, Connecticut
*
Daniel J. Knudsen, 39871 Valley Road, Oconomowoc, WI 53066; (phone) 608-692-3660; (e-mail) djknudsen@aya.yale.edu
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Abstract

This article examines the impact of environmental courts on environmental enforcement in China. Situating the environmental courts within the long arcs of environmental lawmaking and environmental enforcement in China, where a fractured bureaucratic state increasingly drives patterns of experimentation, this article argues that Chinese environmental courts are best understood as “Environmental Protection Bureaus 2.0.” That is, rather than courts in the traditional legal understanding of the term, it is more productive to think of China's environmental courts as another bureaucratic actor. The courts' entrance into an increasingly crowded environmental enforcement hierarchy increases competition and collaboration with traditional and newly created enforcement institutions. This in turn results in institutional feedback that could heighten environmental protection outcomes. The article concludes by briefly examining what these dynamics mean for environmental federalism in China.

Environmental Practice 15:441–461 (2013)

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Features
Copyright
Copyright © National Association of Environmental Professionals 2013 

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ENVIRONMENTAL REVIEWS AND CASE STUDIES: “Environmental Protection Bureau, 2.0”: China's Environmental Courts as Enforcement Institutions
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