China’s environment

CEC_ShapiroIn a new review at JCA, Graeme Lang reviews the second edition of Judith Shapiro’s China’s Environmental Challenges (DOI: 10.1080/00472336.2016.1207795).

Published by Polity Press, China’s Environmental Challenges is an important overview of China’s environmental problems. As a second edition, Lang says that the “structure and notable features of the first edition have been retained, and the examples and case studies updated to 2015, with about 25 pages of
new material.”

While introducing material on China’s “global search for resources,” the focus of the book is on “developments within China. Both ‘bottom-up’ civil society activism and ‘top-down’ state laws and policies” and Lang considers these “are well covered.”

Shapiro’s book also examines the massive development of China’s renewables (“Green China”) and the rise of civil society activism focuses on environment and related health issues. Lang observes that Shapiro’s account largely neglects the broader crackdown on NGOs under the Xi Jinping regime.

Lang concludes that this book deserves “high regard for its thoughtful and example-rich accounts of China’s environmental policies, conflicts and struggles in the ‘reform and opening’ era.” He adds that this well-written book has many interesting examples to illustrate its themes and observations and resources for teaching, that make it “an ideal text for courses which include environmental issues, policies and conflicts in China.”

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