博客 Blog

Official blames foreigners for China’s pollution

China’s local environmental official believes foreigners should be blamed for China’s pollution problems

Article image

Foriegn demand for chinese exports is being blamed for the country's pollution (Image by Greenpeace)

Guess who should be the latest victim of China’s environmental crisis blame game, according to some Chinese officials? It’s the foreigners.

A provincial environmental official said recently that foreigners should be blamed for China’s pollution, People.com, the official website for People’s Daily, reported.

Miao Xuegang, Director of the Anhui Provincial Environmental Protection Authority, said foreigners were being “hypocritical” when criticising China’s pollution problems.

“China is a big exporter and many foreigners have been benefiting from China’s green products. However, the pollution incurred during the production process are left in China. ”

The smoggy weather and the alleged ground water pollution have given environmental issues unprecedented high profile media coverage and aroused great public concern for pollution.

Miao’s “hypocritical” comment, which came amid strong public outcry for firm and efficient handling of the environmental issues, upset China’s green activists.

Liu Jianqiang, chinadialogue’s Beijing editor and a veteran environmentalist, wrote on his Sina Weibo: “following this logic, even Chinese people criticising China’s pollution would be hypocritical, for we ourselves are responsible for the pollution.”

Feng Yongfeng, founder of the Beijing-based NGO Green Beagle, told chinadialogue that officials lack the courage to face the gravity of environmental issues.

“Sometimes, they say it (pollution) is a necessary byproduct of development of socialism with Chinese characteristics. Other times, they blame China’s world factory status for environmental issues,” Feng said, adding “it doesn’t matter who the products are selling to or whether China’s the world factory. The only thing that matters is whether every act of production has complied with the basic requirement of environmental protection principles.”

As controversial comments goes, Miao’s “hypocritical” comment was not the only one that attracted media attention. Days ago, deputy secretary of Yunnan’s provincial Communist Party Committee, Qiu He, a charismatic official in China who already has quite a few memorable media soundbites, said that water resources flowing to neighbouring countries were wasted.

Qiu suggested at the Two Sessions, annual meetings for China’s parliament and political advisory body, that China should use dams to store water so that it won’t all flow to other countries and be wasted.

However, blaming foreigners for China’s environmental issues or benefitting at other countries’ costs is, perhaps, not the best way to reassure China’s green activists or honour China’s commitment to an Eco-civilisation.

Commenting on Qiu He’s suggestion, Feng Yongfeng said “only those stupid officials would spend all their time thinking of ways to appropriate all natural resources for one single country’s use...those who did so should resign as soon as possible”.

Now more than ever…

chinadialogue is at the heart of the battle for truth on climate change and its challenges at this critical time.

Our readers are valued by us and now, for the first time, we are asking for your support to help maintain the rigorous, honest reporting and analysis on climate change that you value in a 'post-truth' era.

Support chinadialogue

发表评论 Post a comment

评论通过管理员审核后翻译成中文或英文。 最大字符 1200。

Comments are translated into either Chinese or English after being moderated. Maximum characters 1200.

评论 comments

Default avatar
匿名 | Anonymous

可能有些虚伪,但却是正确的。

遗憾的是,缪学刚说的很正确。停止供应依靠污染生产出的产品是符合中国人的利益的,他们应当支持尽早推行国际碳政策,和其他旨在促进社会、环境可持续的消费的税收。这样做不必大规模减少中国的出口,并且,对于任何热爱自己的家园胜过个人短期利益的人来说,这样做符合他们的利益。我们都知道不改变现状将给地球造成毁灭性的伤害。

Hypocritical may be, but also correct.

Unfortunately, Liao Xuegang is quite correct. It is in the Chinese peoples' interest to stop supplying products which depend on pollution. They should support the early introduction of global carbon and other taxation designed to ensure consumption is socially and environmentally sustainable. Doing so need not greatly reduce China's exports and would be in the interests of anyone anywhere who loves their family more than their own short-term gratification - given the current trajectory of anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions. We all know that the costs to the planet of not changing the status quo will be catastrophic.

Default avatar
匿名 | Anonymous

吹毛求疵一下

该官员的姓是缪(读 Miao 4声),不是廖(读 Liao 4声);英文也需要改过来。

The family name of the official is Miao (缪), not Liao (廖)。

May I nitpick a second

The family name of the official is Miao (缪), not Liao (廖)。

Default avatar
匿名 | Anonymous

停止对中国的污染

西方国家应该停止从中国购买商品,一旦我们不再从中国进口,我们就可以理直气壮地说,是中国自己污染了自己。

Stop Polluting China

The western world must stop buying from China to avoid polluting China with our purchases. After we stop, we can then criticize China for its pollution without being called hypocrits.