Issue #07: Has China’s “Green Movement” Ended?
An In-depth Interview on environmentalism, climate activism, and the past, present and future of the environmental movement in China
In this record-breaking 5,000-word interview, I explored the following questions with a witness to China's Green Movement:
Has China’s “Green Movement” come to an end, or has it reinvented itself in new forms?
China’s Green Movement, exemplified by the “Nu (Salween) River Anti-Dam Campaign” and the “Xiamen PX Protest,” is unlikely to reappear in the near future. However, China’s civil society groups and individuals are still working creatively to promote environmental public welfare.
A decade after the initial wave of active climate action before the CoP15 Copenhagen, China's new climate commitment in late 2020 sparked a second wave of widespread enthusiasm in the public and private sectors. However, there has been a substantial shift in the driving force, as China’s civil society today plays a considerably smaller role.
The scarcity of opportunities to re-engage with public life has compelled people to turn their attention inward, focusing on their personal lives and creating safe cacoons. “New farmers” and “New Villagers” and the popular thinking of “rediscovering the nearby” in urban China represent the rapidly altering values of the social elites in Millennials and Generation Z; yet, this does not necessarily mean regression.
In addition, we discussed the shifting strategies and focal areas of Chinese environmental NGOs over the past decade, as well as broader reflections on the "Green Movement."
The interviewee, who remains an active member of Chinese civil society, explained their reasons for choosing to remain anonymous at the end of the interview.
This interview is exclusively distributed to paid subscribers.
In the next issue, I will join some of the most astute analysts and observers of #China and #climate issues to examine the subsequent milestones of China's energy transition and climate action after the country reaches peak carbon in the next year or two. Stay tuned.
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