Environment

10.19.12

Overfishing Pushes 80% of Chinese Fishermen Towards Bankruptcy

from chinadialogue
In mid-September, the fishing season got under way as usual in Ningbo, on China’s east coast, after the three-month season when fishing is forbidden. Over 2,000 steel-hulled boats headed out to sea. But, on board, there was little cause for optimism...

Environment

10.16.12

Chinese Boycott Airline China Southern After Mysterious Death of Dog

from chinadialogue
On the morning of October 10, a high-profile lawsuit against China Southern, one of China’s “big three” airlines, opened at Chaoyang People’s Court in Beijing. The plaintiffs? Zhao Nan and Chen Lei, a couple from Tianjin, north China, who blame the...

Caixin Media

10.12.12

Bo Xilai as a Catalyst for Political Reform

No matter how you look at it, the disciplinary process surrounding the case of Bo Xilai will have historic implications.Details of the crimes committed by Bo, his wife, Bogu Kailai, and his former right-hand man, Wang Lijun, reflect a level of...

Media

10.11.12

Netizens React to Mo Yan’s Nobel Prize

Ouyang Bin
Upon hearing the news that novelist Mo Yan was awarded the 2012 Nobel Prize in Literature, a flurry of messages about the fifty-seven-year-old Shandong native circulated on weibo, China’s equivalent of Twitter, expressing decidedly mixed opinions...

Environment

10.11.12

China’s New Leaders Must Respect Environmental Rights

from chinadialogue
China has achieved remarkable economic successes over the last three decades. For years, it has led the world in GDP growth. But widespread industrialization and urbanization, along with growth based on increased use of resources, mean the nation...

Features

10.11.12

Will Mo Yan’s Nobel Prize Finally Mean Better Book Sales Abroad?

Jonathan Landreth
Literature in translation in the United States has wide but shallow roots, making English language stars out of the likes of Gabriel Garcia Márquez and Haruki Murakami, but leaving most of China’s writers struggling to take hold. Now, veteran...

Environment

10.09.12

Top Clothing Brands Linked to Water Pollution Scandal in China

from chinadialogue
China is the major hub of the international textile industry, exporting US$200 billion worth of textile and apparel products in 2010—accounting for 34 percent of global exports.It’s provided cheap T-shirts and other clothes to people around the...

Environment

10.02.12

Decline of Bees Forces China’s Apple Farmers to Pollinate by Hand

from chinadialogue
In the last fifty years, the global human population has nearly doubled, while the average calories consumed per person has increased by about 30 percent.To cope with the ever growing demand for food, more land has been brought into agricultural...

Caixin Media

09.28.12

Bo Xilai Ousted from Communist Party

The Communist Party has expelled Bo Xilai, the former party chief of Chongqing, who’s been embroiled in corruption allegations since early this year.The Politburo made the decision on September 28, the official Xinhua News Agency said. Bo will next...

Caixin Media

09.28.12

Living on Dangerous Ground

Fractures had long plagued the rocky mountainside next to Huang Daihong’s home. When an earthquake jolted Luozehe County in Yunnan province, Huang watched a large black boulder release a shower of stones that instantly killed her neighbor.The...

Caixin Media

09.26.12

After Panjin Killing, Public Deserves to Know

There is growing public skepticism about the veracity of a government report detailing a demolition-related incident in Panjin, Liaoning province, during which a police officer killed a villager for allegedly threatening his life.Questions revolve...

My First Trip

09.24.12

Witnessing the Cultural Revolution at its Dawn

John Hawkins
To this day, I am not sure why the Chinese government approved my request to visit the PRC in the summer of 1966.On a hot and humid early August Sunday, a fellow student from the University of Hawaii and I walked across the border in Hong Kong at Lo...

Culture

09.24.12

Wrapped Up: An Interview with Lin Tianmiao

Sun Yunfan
Lin Tianmiao was born in Taiyuan, Shanxi in 1961 to an artistic family. Her father was a traditional painter and her mother a dancer. In the 1980s, she married video artist Wang Gongxin, moved to New York, and became a textile designer. It wasn’t...

Media

09.24.12

Law Professor He Weifang on Why Wang Lijun’s Trial Scared Him

Amy Qin
Today, the Chinese state news agency Xinhua announced that Wang Lijun, the former Chongqing police chief, has been found guilty by a court in Chengdu of four criminal charges, including defection, abuse of power, taking bribes, and bending the law...

Environment

09.20.12

Desertification in Tibet’s Wetlands Threatens the Yellow River

from chinadialogue
The “kidneys” of the Tibetan plateau are failing.The Zoige Wetland National Nature Reserve, which sits on the northeastern fringe of western China’s Qinghai-Tibet plateau, contains the largest alpine peat wetlands in the world. It is also the...

Caixin Media

09.20.12

Hit TV Show Sings Song of Media Model Success

A reality-talent TV songfest popular in more than forty countries around the world has become an instant hit in China, underpinning enthusiasm for an experimental business model linked to media sector reform.The Voice of China’s debut show in July...

Features

09.18.12

A Mosque of Their Own

Kathleen McLaughlin
The women of Sangpo know well they are the guardians of a 300-year-old custom that sets them apart in Islam and they are increasingly mindful that economic development could be that tradition’s undoing.Sangpo, a dusty hamlet about two hours from the...

Caixin Media

09.17.12

How a Protest in Beijing Stuck to the Script

On the afternoon of September 16, rows of policemen and security personnel in black T-shirts lined Beijing’s Liangmaqiao Road near the Japanese embassy during protests over the Diaoyu Islands controversy. Security guards were visible everywhere,...

Caixin Media

09.16.12

No Excuse for the Excuses Officials Hand Us

Putting the right spin on one’s words is a science, and civil servants with fiduciary responsibility have to master this subject. It helps to shift blame to someone else; a child, a spouse, or a convenient foreigner will do.Several weeks ago Yang...

Media

09.16.12

What Microblogs Aren’t Telling You About China

Amy Qin
In China, where notions of freedom of speech and freedom of expression are seen by the government as secondary to the all-important ideal of social stability, there is little space, if any, for truly open and unmediated public conversation...

Caixin Media

09.14.12

Why War is Not a Possibility

There won’t be a war in East Asia.The United States has five military alliances in the western Pacific. Its allies are South Korea, Japan, Thailand, the Philippines, and Singapore. And American battleships are busy patrolling the seas.Without a go-...

Caixin Media

09.14.12

Moneyless Pensions Yield No Gold for the Old

SHENYANG—Morning breezes turn chilly in late August, signaling fall’s approach in the Tiexi factory district.For the unemployed men and women standing on sidewalks between a labor bureau office and a park every day at 6 a.m., the change of seasons...

Caixin Media

09.07.12

Local Governments Bet Big on New Investment

They’re still hung over from a 4 trillion yuan spending spree initiated by the central government nearly four years ago, but local governments across China are pressing ahead anyway with huge new investment plans.In late August, for example, the...

Caixin Media

09.07.12

Despite Regulations, Bus Travel Still Risky

Thirty-six people died recently on a Shaanxi province highway when a double-decker bus slammed into a fuel tanker.The crash underscored ongoing demands for beefing up traffic law enforcement and improving the design of these often-crowded overnight...

Caixin Media

09.07.12

Long Ride for Justice

Lea Cao had his first inkling that something was wrong when he got a long-distance phone call from relatives in southeastern China.His family members in Fuzhou phoned Cao in New York to say that his parents and brother had failed to arrive at the...

Media

09.06.12

Michelle Obama’s DNC Speech

Peony Lui & Sun Yunfan
Something big is about to happen in China. After ruling the country for a decade, China’s current leadership, helmed by President Hu Jintao, will transfer power to a new group of leaders. The process will be opaque, the date of the transition is a...

Media

09.06.12

Tangled in the Party Line

Amy Qin
Netizens on China’s popular microblogging service Sina Weibo are in a fit of pique over remarks made by a PLA major general about the importance of Chinese TV commentators holding “unconditionally” to the Party line. Zhang Zhaozhong, a major general...

Environment

09.06.12

Sinking Shanghai “Not Prepared to Admit” Climate Change Threat

from chinadialogue
It’s been a brutal summer for much of urban China. From the once-in-sixty-years storm that lashed Beijing in July, killing seventy-nine people and costing US$1.6 million, to the typhoon floods that triggered mass evacuations in Jingdezhen city, the...

Environment

09.06.12

Chinese Fear Price Hikes After Electricity Reforms

from chinadialogue
This summer, Chinese people have been thinking twice before turning on their air conditioners.In July, tiered electricity pricing came into effect across China, except in the far western regions of Tibet and Xinjiang. This means the people who...

Caixin Media

09.05.12

Making a Killing on Herbal Medicine

Mushroom gatherers converge and crawl on hillsides in Qinghai province every March while foraging for wild caterpillar fungus.Theirs is not a garden-variety morel hunt. Caterpillar fungus is a hard-to-find parasite that infects and mummifies a host...

Media

08.31.12

“Naked Official” Streaks to U.S.

Amy Qin
On Monday, the People’s Daily confirmed rumors that Wang Guoqiang, a senior official of Fengcheng city, Liaoning province, fled China in April to the United States. Though Wang has been absent since April, his case was only uncovered last Sunday,...

Caixin Media

08.31.12

In Guangdong, Tea Oil Greases Official Palms

In the financial documents for a Guangdong province grower and processor of tea seed oil is a list of key shareholders who also happen to be the relatives of local government officials.Off the record, Guangdong Xindadi Biotechnology Co. Ltd. and its...

Caixin Media

08.31.12

Tall Order in Ordos

A desert city infamously littered with new but vacant apartment buildings and idle construction sites is getting no relief in the parched climate for local government budgets.Ordos, where local leaders have been trying for years to build a thriving...

Out of School

08.30.12

Refresher Course: The Silk Road

Valerie Hansen
The “Silk Road” was a stretch of shifting, unmarked paths across massive expanses of deserts and mountains—not a real road at any point or time. Archeologists have found few ancient Silk Road bridges, gates, or paving stones like those along Rome’s...

Environment

08.30.12

Milk Price War Puts Squeeze on China’s Dairy Farmers

from chinadialogue
China’s dairy industry has been in a precarious state since 2008, the year of the Sanlu milk-powder scandal, when babies across the country were poisoned by melamine-tainted infant formula. This incident revealed to the world the flaws in China’s...

Media

08.30.12

Chinese “Traitors” and the Foreign Press

Hu Yong
{vertical_photo_right}On June 2nd, local family planning officials forced Feng Jianmei, a twenty-two-year-old Shaanxi woman pregnant with her second daughter, to undergo an abortion, as a consequence of China’s One Child...

Environment

08.28.12

China’s South-North Water Transfer is “Irrational”

from chinadialogue
Ruth Matthews, executive director of the Water Footprint Network, tells Tom Levitt how food has come to dominate our water use and why China may need to re-think its South-North water transfer project.Tom Levitt: What do you mean by our water...

Caixin Media

08.25.12

Revamping the Landscape of Forex Flow

Capital flows out of China may be accelerating, a phenomenon commonly associated with waning confidence in a nation’s economy. But the foreign exchange regulator says the change is a step in the right direction.In the first six months of the year,...

Caixin Media

08.25.12

Gu Kailai: Getting Away with Murder?

Closer Look: Nearly Getting Away with MurderBy Zhang JianjingShortly after Bogu Kailai received a death sentence with a two-year reprieve, four former high-ranking Chongqing police officers were sentenced to jail terms ranging from five to eleven...

Culture

08.21.12

As Beautiful As Little Cats

Agnès Varda from Leap
Leap Editor's Note: In 1957, the filmmaker Agnès Varda assumed the role of photographer during a two-month journey around both urban and rural China with a delegation of French dignitaries. In 2012, her photographs from that trip appeared in “...

Environment

08.20.12

Tibetans Fight Tourism on Holy Lakes

from chinadialogue
Mining, dam construction, sand excavation, poaching, and grassland degradation are seriously damaging the Qinghai-Tibet plateau, the world’s most fragile ecosystem. But without a second thought, the tourism industry has joined their ranks. The only...

Caixin Media

08.18.12

Economist Lin Yifu on State-Sustained Growth

Standing up to a wave of pessimism about China’s prospects for continuing high-level economic growth is no easy task.But economist Lin Yifu, who recently retired as a senior vice president and chief economist at the World Bank, is holding his ground...

Media

08.16.12

The People’s Daily Said What?

Bi Cheng
In the course of its dramatic growth, China often churns out unprecedented numbers. But few of them have been more controversial than the recently released National Revival Index, a formula devised to measure China’s economic and social development...

Caixin Media

08.16.12

Rise Of The Online Titans

China’s titans of online retailing have unsheathed their marketing swords for a war in cyberspace that industry watchers say will decide the future of everyday shopping habits for nearly a billion consumers.Dozens of retail companies have staked out...

Environment

08.15.12

Can New Trials Boost Chinese Wind?

from chinadialogue
For the last half year, the National Energy Administration (NEA) has been making its interest in Inner Mongolia’s western regions crystal clear. This part of north China, rich in wind-power potential, has hosted group after group of energy officials...

Environment

08.15.12

Official Shrugs Off Public Food “Panic”

from chinadialogue
Wang Guowei heads up the policy and legislation department at the State Council Food Safety Commission. He spoke to Xu Nan and Zhou Wei about the nature of China’s food safety problems and the ongoing policy response.chinadialogue: Compared with...

Caixin Media

08.13.12

We Make It Pour, Declare Cloud-Seeders

Will it be clear or gray skies today? Increasingly, the answer in China may be decided by the government.The Chinese have been seeding clouds for decades. Airplanes equipped with rocket-launchers and chemicals for inducing rainfall are based in...

Caixin Media

08.09.12

Subsidized Cartoons, Comics Tickling Too Few

Breaking into the animated film industry usually requires a basic plan for blending colorful images and clever storytelling in ways that entertain the public—and make money.Since 2006, however, animated film start-ups in China have done quite well...

Environment

08.09.12

Data Gaps Hobble Carbon Trading

from chinadialogue
Late last October, China’s top economic planning body—the National Development and Reform Commission—instructed the cities of Beijing, Tianjin, Shanghai, Chongqing, and Shenzhen, plus Hubei and Guangdong provinces, to get ready to run carbon-trading...

Environment

08.08.12

Doomed Toilet Scheme Was “Valuable Experience”

from chinadialogue
For a large share of the 750 million urban people worldwide who lack adequate sanitation, flush toilets connected to municipal sewers are not a viable option due to poverty, water shortages, groundwater contamination risks, and other issues. The...

Caixin Media

08.07.12

Shenyang Businesses Closed By Inspection Panic

Most shop owners in a city of roughly 8 million people have pulled down their shutters to avoid what they fear will be stringent enforcement of a city ordinance tied to the hosting of the 2013 National Games.Small business owners in Shenyang,...

Out of School

08.03.12

The Rehabilitation of Pearl Buck

Peter Conn
In the summer of 1934, Pearl Buck boarded a ship in Shanghai that was bound for America. She was forty-two years old, and had lived for thirty-four of those years in China, mostly in cities along the Yangzi River. Pearl and her first husband, John...

Media

08.03.12

Netizens Weigh in on Weightlifting Defeat

Amy Qin
When seventeen-year-old Zhou Jun from Hubei province stepped onto the mat in London on Sunday, the pressure she was facing far exceeded the weight of the 96-kg barbell sitting at her feet. The entire history of China’s success in women’s...

Caixin Media

08.03.12

Queerly Not Dangerous

Several authors of a “danmei” fiction website were recently detained by authorities. The injustice is so glaringly obvious that I can’t stop myself from saying something.Danmei (or “boys' love”) fiction is particularly interesting only to a...

Environment

08.02.12

Eco-toilet Scheme Ends in Failure

from chinadialogue
The large banner at the front gate of what used to be called Daxing Ecological Community has been changed to read “Civilized City.” A showroom by the nearby supermarket is locked up and empty while a little further away, near a scenic lake, lies a...

Caixin Media

08.02.12

Landlords of the Rings Push Urban Rents Higher

A twenty-six-year-old woman who moved to Beijing from a distant town for work could be a poster child for urban China’s latest housing market phenomenon: skyrocketing rents.The woman, surnamed Fang, said goodbye to Liaoning province three years ago...

Environment

08.01.12

Protests Show Chinese Kids’ Fears

from chinadialogue
The decision to cancel the metal refinery project in Shifang last month after protesters clashed with the police has been widely reported in the Chinese and global media. This is not the first time a project has been shelved due to public...

Caixin Media

07.31.12

Shedding Light on the Solar Crisis

After Suntech Power Holdings Co. Ltd., a Wuxi-headquartered photovoltaic cell producer, went public on the New York Stock Exchange in 2005, China’s solar industry grew at an astonishing speed. More than 200 photovoltaic product manufacturers are...