15 October 2020
The CCTL Environmental, Energy and Climate Law Cluster organised a seminar entitled ‘In the Name of Legitimacy and Efficiency: Evaluating China’s EIA Legal Reform’ that took place online on 15 October 2020.
The seminar, delivered by Professor Xiangbai He associate professor of Zhejiang University Guanghua Law School, examined the significance of the core aspects of the Chinese environmental impact assessment (EIA) legislation and identified its main problems. Professor He provided an overview of the stages of the reform of the EIA legislation that started in 2015 and appraised the impact of the legislative revisions to address legislative loopholes, and improve the effectiveness of the EIA process by increasing penalties and addressed criticism that EIA had a “rubber-stamp function”. The legislative revisions and policies implemented during the past years have helped to improve the framework for public participation. Professor He appraised that the recent legislative reforms help to restore the original logic of the EIA and enhance the legitimacy of the process. Professor He also discussed the impact of current policies related to the deregulation and improvement of the business environment to support economic growth in light of the COVID19 pandemic.
Professor Zhang Hao chaired the seminar and moderated a stimulating Q&A session.