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Decade of efforts to strengthen environmental laws
September 26,2022   By:China Daily

A file photo shows a wind power plant in Zhangjiakou, North China's Hebei province. [Photo/Xinhua]
Sept. 26, 2022 -- China has made consistent efforts to bolster environmental legislation and awareness of environmental rights in recent decades in a bid to improve human rights.
On July 28, the United Nations General Assembly passed a resolution recognizing the right to a clean, healthy and sustainable environment as a human right.
Tang Xianxing, deputy director of the Human Rights Center at Fudan University, said at an online side event to the ongoing 51st session of the UN Human Rights Council on Friday that China has included environmental rights into its system of human rights protection, which is of benefit in giving people their environmental rights.
He said the country clarified environmental rights in the first issue of the National Human Rights Action Plan, which was released in 2009, before International law, and China's Constitution or laws, officially recognized environmental rights as human rights.
In the three subsequent State-level action plans released in 2012,2016 and 2021, China continued to improve people's knowledge of environmental protection, as well as their ability to join in and supervise.
"In the fourth plan, which runs from 2021 to 2025, environmental rights protection has been placed on a par with economic, social and cultural rights, as well as civil and political rights," Tang said.
Wu Weixing, a professor at the law school of Nanjing University in Jiangsu province, told the event that over the course of the last decade, the people have been able to enjoy better environmental rights as a result of the attention placed on what the government calls "the development of ecological civilization", health issues and procedural environmental rights.
He added that academicians have pushed for the compilation of an environmental code, and that a number of experts have added suggestions on environmental rights protection to the draft code.
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