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This article examines the substantive and procedural rules on climate finance adopted as part of the Paris Rulebook. It finds that the Rulebook has occasioned some important progress, less on substance than on procedure facilitating greater transparency. On substance, the Rulebook recognizes the existing goal by developed-country parties to the unfccc to raise $100 billion of climate finance per year by 2020 and it provides for a process to be initiated in 2020 to determine a new collective goal that will be no less than the existing one. On procedure, the Rulebook establishes extensive reporting obligations for improved understanding of climate-finance flows. By examining the implementation challenges and gaps, this article discusses whether the climate-finance provisions of the Paris Agreement as developed through its Rulebook will be able to remain consistent with the applicable principles of international law on climate finance and thus drive a comprehensive shift in finance flows.

In: Climate Law
Sustainable Development and the Practice of Good Governance
Editor: Wei Zhang
In The Right to Development authors offer a new path for the implementation and protection of the right to development from the new perspective of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.
Instead of emphasizing the economic perspective, this book focuses on how to realize the right to sustainable development by resolution of conflicts among the economy, the environment and society.
Integrating the value analysis into the empirical analysis method, this book expands the scope of the United Nations Declaration on the Right to Development and strengthens its practical function, extracts Chinese experiences, lessons from South Asia, local knowledge in South Africa and practice in Peru on the implementation of the right to development, and puts forward the idea of building human rights criteria in the South.

This article examines whether ‘trial and error’ is an effective approach to the design of regulations for China’s emission-trading pilot programs. These pilots are designed and operated at local levels for the purpose of testing regulatory design and implementation, with the hope that a national scheme will be built on these experiences. Through an examination of China’s involvement in the Clean Development Mechanism, design and operating principles for emission trading, and China’s regulatory and institutional framework for emission reductions, this article argues that the trial-and-error approach helps the regulatory design of local pilot programs to be adaptive to local circumstances. Such circumstances include local laws, institutional capacities, and developmental priorities. But trial and error also has shortcomings, namely in its capacity to mediate the competing demands of environmental sustainability, commercial viability, financial integrity, and political legitimacy. This article contains lessons for the construction of China’s national emission-trading scheme.

In: Climate Law

Abstract

Following decades of fast growth in China’s power sector, underpinned by considerable investment in coal-fired generation, in recent years there has been a decisive move towards increasing energy supply that is climate and environmentally friendly. In order to meet this policy agenda, a number of regulatory mechanisms have been established to support and further the implementation of China’s Renewable Energy Law. A key feature of these regulatory developments has been increased regulation and enforcement of the obligation to ensure priority access of renewable energy to the power grid and full purchase of renewable energy generation. In practice, however, utilising electricity generation from renewable sources has been significantly curtailed. This article analyses whether the law and policy frameworks provide sufficient support and protection to ensure priority access of renewable energy in China. By considering relevant Chinese law cases, this article also provides insights into the judicial and regulatory practices in relation to curtailment disputes, particularly the limited transparency of the mediation process and the challenges faced by renewable energy generators in bringing cases to court.

In: Chinese Journal of Environmental Law

Abstract

Since January 2015, China’s Environmental Protection Law has allowed Chinese Non- Government Organisations to initiate public interest litigation in relation to activities that harm the environment. This article assesses the implementation of this reform. Based on a variety of primary and secondary sources, it documents almost every case filed in the first two-and-a-half years of the implementation of public interest environmental litigation in China. It demonstrates a rapid development of this new field of litigation which, so far, has almost systematically led to Court decisions favourable to the plaintiffs. Yet, we also recognize some limitations and room for improvement, in particular regarding barriers to access to courts and questions of enforcement of judgments. Therefore, while public interest environmental litigation is a promising opportunity for the protection of the environment in China, some possible refinements of the relevant statutory framework can be identified.

In: Chinese Journal of Environmental Law