China’s Annual Dog-Eating Festival Prompts Social Media Firestorm

Lindsey Bever and Nick Kirkpatrick
Washington Post
At a solstice festival in China 10,000 canines are said to be beaten, killed and cooked for human consumption.

Video

06.10.15

A Miner’s China Dream

Sim Chi Yin
Over the four years I have known him, He Quangui, a gold miner from Shaanxi, has told me many times he wants to travel with me back to Beijing. It’s not just me he wants to visit. He dreams of going to the Chinese leadership’s compound, Zhongnanhai...

China Issues White Paper on Human Rights

Xinhua
China has made "tremendous achievements" on the "the correct path of human rights development that suits its national conditions."...

Caixin Media

06.04.15

China Uses Drones to Monitor Pollution Problems from Above

China’s environmental regulators want to increase the use of drones watching pollution levels, supplementing the existing monitoring system.In the central city of Wuhan, drones were sent to urban areas to inspect emissions from chimneys that are...

Q. and A.: Luo Yufeng, a.k.a. Sister Feng, on Life as a Manicurist in New York

Vanessa Piao
New York Times
Sister Feng, whose real name is Luo Yufeng, is an Internet celebrity with more than 4.7 million followers on Sina Weibo

Dying to Breathe

Sim Chi Yin
National Geographic
This is the unseen cost of gold mining in China—the world’s top gold producer. In China, silicosis is considered a form of pneumoconiosis, which affects an estimated six million workers who toil in gold, coal, or silver mines or in stone-cutting...

Dying to Breathe—A Short Film Shows China’s True Cost of Gold

Sim Chi Yin
National Geographic
This is the unseen cost of gold mining in China—the world’s top gold producer. In China, silicosis is considered a form of pneumoconiosis, which affects an estimated six million workers who toil in gold, coal, or silver mines or in stone-cutting...

U.S. Military Proposes Challenge to China Sea Claims

Adam Entous, Gordon Lubold, and Julian...
Wall Street Journal
Moves would send Navy planes, ships near artificial islands built by China in contested waters.

Fatal Police Shooting Under Investigation: Ministry

Xinhua
There are clear rules on the carrying and use of fire arms by police officers, and it will take time to confirm whether police had opened fire legally in the case.

Environment

05.08.15

It’s Time to Fix China’s Food Safety Conundrum

from chinadialogue
Food safety scandals have become so common in China that people are losing confidence in what they eat. The government has consistently emphasised the need for better regulation of the food industry, and it’s established an inter-ministerial...

Environment

04.30.15

‘Blue Sky’ App Gets China’s Public Thinking About Pollution Solutions

from chinadialogue
The Blue Sky Map app, which was officially launched April 28 by the Institute of Public and Environmental Affairs (IPE), enables the public to check up on air and water quality and local sources of pollution, and scrutinize emissions from 9,000...

An American Hero in China

Ian Johnson from New York Review of Books
One night in September, three hundred people crowded into the basement auditorium of an office tower in Beijing to hear a discussion between two of China’s most popular writers. One was Liu Yu, a thirty-eight-year-old political scientist and blogger...

China Shocks World by Genetically Engineering Human Embryos

Sarah Knapton
Telegraph
Critics warn China's the ‘Wild West’ of genetic research, on its way to desiging children. ...

China’s New Ad Ban?

Amy Tennery
Reuters
China is considering a ban on advertisements for infant milk formula in a bid to tackle low levels of breast feeding.

‘Masturbation Will Lead to Homosexuality’: China’s LGBT Sex-Ed Problem in Chinese

Cole Delbyck
Nation
In a country where sex and sexuality remain taboo topics of discussion, such misinformation remains common.

Reports

04.01.15

Can Fracking Green China’s Growth?

Ilmi Granoff, Sam Pickard, Julian Doczi, Roger Calow, Zhenbo Hou, & Vanessa D’Alançon
Overseas Development Institute
This paper analyses the best available technical, scientific, and engineering literature on the risks and opportunities posed by shale gas, and also what policy environment could maximise the opportunity and minimise the risk. It also analyses China...

Environment

03.26.15

China Court to Hear NGO Lawsuit Targeting Polluter’s Profits

from chinadialogue
An environmental group has filed a lawsuit for 30 million yuan (U.S.$4.8 million) to seek compensation from a Shandong chemical company for pumping out harmful substances—a legal action thought to be the first public interest litigation for air...

Media

03.20.15

China Has Its Own Anti-Vaxxers—Blame the Internet

Alexa Olesen
While health officials in the United States and parts of Europe wrestle with a growing anti-vaccination, or “anti-vaxxer” movement, China is dealing with a less organized but similarly serious fear of immunizations. Social media reveals traces of...

China’s ‘Comfort Women’

Lucy Hornby
Financial Times
Thousands of Chinese women were forced into sex slavery during the second world war. Here is one survivor’s story. 

Chinese High School Students Riot Over Mass Food Poisoning

Wei Ling
Radio Free Asia
Thousands of disgruntled students smashed up their high school campus in Guizhou in the early hours of March 20 .

Conversation

03.18.15

Dark Days for Women in China?

Rebecca E. Karl, Leta Hong Fincher & more
With China’s recent criminal detention of five feminist activists, gender inequality in China is back in the spotlight. What does a crackdown on Chinese women fighting for equal representation say about the current state of the nation’s political...

Environment

03.11.15

China’s Polluted Soil and Water Will Drive up World Food Prices

from chinadialogue
China’s push for more intense farming has kept its city dwellers well-fed and helped lift millions of rural workers out of poverty. But it has come at a cost. Ecosystems in what should be one of the country’s most fertile regions have already been...

Media

03.09.15

China’s Real Inconvenient Truth: Its Class Divide

Rachel Lu
China is talking about its pollution problem, but its equally serious class problem remains obscured behind the haze. Smog leapt to the forefront of Chinese national discourse after the February 28 release of "Under the Dome," a 103-minute...

China’s Real Inconvenient Truth: Its Class Divide

Rachel Lu
Foreign Policy
Solving China's air and water pollution will require addressing the gap between rich urbanites and rural peasants...

China’s BIG Gamble in the TINY Comoros Islands

Eric Olander, Cobus van Staden & more
Comoros is a tiny archipelago nation off the east coast of Africa in the Indian ocean where a major Chinese experiment is underway. Chinese scientists and pharmaceutical have undertaken a radical experiment to test an unlicensed anti-malarial herbal...

Environment

03.04.15

Clearing Skies

Adam Minter from Sierra Club
After dark is when the pollution arrives on the outskirts of Shanghai. On a bright night, when moonlight refracts through the smog, you can see black clouds of soot pouring out of small workshop smokestacks silhouetted against the sky. In case you...

Reports

03.02.15

China’s Long March To Safe Drinking Water

Hongqiao Liu
China Water Risk
China’s central government set ambitious goals to safeguard water quality in 2011, at the outset of the 12th Five-Year Plan (2011-2015). Those goals targeted improvements from source-to-tap, earmarking a budget of nearly RMB 700 billion (U.S.$112...

Chinese Babies Should be Trained to Play Football—President Xi

BBC
BBC
Beijing has approved the country's "football reform plan," and says being good at soccer is the "ardent wish of the whole nation."...

Parent Meddling Makes for Unmerry Marriages in China

Laurie Burkitt
Wall Street Journal
"Parental matchmaking is robustly correlated with lower marital harmony,” says a new World Bank report...

Books

02.10.15

The People’s Republic of Chemicals

William J. Kelly and Chip Jacobs
Maverick environmental writers William J. Kelly and Chip Jacobs follow up their acclaimed Smogtown with a provocative examination of China’s ecological calamity already imperiling a warming planet. Toxic smog most people figured was obsolete needlessly kills as many as died in the 9/11 attacks every day, while sometimes Grand Canyon-sized drifts of industrial particles aloft on the winds rain down ozone and waterway-poisoning mercury in America.In vivid, gonzo prose blending first-person reportage with exhaustive research and a sense of karma, Kelly and Jacobs describe China’s ancient love affair with coal, Bill Clinton’s blunders cutting free-trade deals enabling the U.S. to "export" manufacturing emissions to Asia in a shift that pilloried the West's middle class, Communist Party manipulation of eco-statistics, the horror of cancer villages, the deception of the 2008 Beijing Olympics, and spellbinding peasant revolts against cancer-spreading plants involving thousands in mostly-censored melées. Ending with China’s monumental coal-bases decried by climatologists as a global warming dagger, The People's Republic of Chemicals names names and emphasizes humanity over bloodless statistics in a classic sure to ruffle feathers as an indictment of money as the real green that not even Al Gore can deny.   —Rare Bird Books, A Vireo Book  {chop}

Media

02.05.15

Why Chinese Promote Confining New Mothers for a Month

Rachel Lu
HONG KONG—Giving birth is never easy, but for new Chinese mothers the month following a baby’s arrival is particularly fraught. Immediately after I became pregnant for the first time, I started to hear about zuoyuezi, or “sitting the month.” It’s a...

Vets Battle to save Stricken Panda in Shaanxi

Huang Zhiling
China Daily
Vets are racing to treat a 5-year-old panda diagnosed with canine distemper at the Shaanxi Rare Wildlife Rescue and Breeding Research Center.

China Reports Sharp Rise in HIV Cases

Patti Waldmeir
Financial Times
China had nearly half a million people living with the virus or disease by the end of August last year, with 70,000 of them newly diagnosed in the first eight months of 2014, official statistics showed.

Environment

01.16.15

Can the Potato Help Feed China, Cut Pollution, and Alleviate Drought?

from chinadialogue
The Ministry of Agriculture’s move to make potatoes an increasingly important staple in Chinese kitchens, including the propagation of recipes that rely on the humble tuber, at first glance might appear slightly odd and surprising.The potato has...

Eating Alone in China

Fan Jiayang
New Yorker
The first time I ate at a restaurant by myself, I live-tweeted the experience. “Hot-potting alone!” I enthused, posting a photo I’d taken of a burbling electric pot, ringed by plates of enoki mushrooms, plump squares of tofu, and green-bean-infused...

Caixin Media

01.09.15

Baby Hatch Programs Struggle to Cope With Number of Infants With Birth Defects

Giving birth to her first baby granted Zheng Yuling no happiness, but instead brought pain and sadness. The seriously ill girl died hours after birth, and Zheng's husband, Chen Dafu, was arrested on suspicion he abandoned the newborn.Their baby...

China Might Be Killing Off a Pikachu-Like Animal For No Reason

Kayla Ruble
Vice News
The animated yellow rodent-like character, Pikachu, from the Pokémon video game and TV franchise, is not a total work of fiction. In fact, many believe the creature is based off of a small mousey animal found in China known as a pika.

Stampede Highlights China’s Reliance on Outsourcing Security

James T. Areddy
Wall Street Journal
A week after the tragedy, authorities have yet to provide an official explanation for what went wrong.

Falling Through the Cracks of China’s Health-Care System

Qiyan Li and Laurie Burkitt
Wall Street Journal
China says 95% of its 1.34 billion people are covered by medical insurance. That should have included Zhao Guomei, whose struggle with a rare but treatable disease shows how the system is failing for millions of China’s workers.

Myanmar Returns to What Sells: Heroin

Thomas Fuller
New York Times
A decade ago, Myanmar seemed on course to wipe out the opium fields and heroin jungle labs along its eastern border, the notorious Golden Triangle.

Other

12.30.14

A Look Back at 2014

It’s hard to believe, but ChinaFile is almost two years old. It’s been an exciting year for us, and, as ever, an eventful year for China. It was a year of muscular leadership from Xi Jinping, who has now been in office just over two years and who...

Here’s Where All Those Cheap Santa Hats and Plastic Snowmen Come from

Heather Timmons
Quartz
The Chinese city of Yiwu, about 250 kilometers from Shanghai, is often referred to as China’s “Christmas village” thanks to the massive amount of holiday-related merchandise made there. Xinhua, China’s state-news agency, claims that 60% of the world...

In China, Expectant Dads Line Up to Experience Labor Pains

Laurie Burkitt
Wall Street Journal
He described the treatment as creating a three-part sensation: hot steel balls dropping on his stomach and then a hook being gouged into him, followed by the ripping of his innards. “I treated her to a French dinner after,” says Mr. Li.

China: Inside an Internet Gaming Disorder Rehab Center

Massoud Hayoun
Al Jazeera
There are about 113,000 Internet cafes and bars in China, according to official figures. Lower-end establishments are typically a sole means of accessing the Web for China’s migrant labor population and the poor—or at 24-hour locations, a place to...

Environmental Filmmakers Have Rare Impact in China

Louise Watt
Associated Press
One clip shows a girl swatting flies from a younger child among piles of trash. Another has children blowing up used medical gloves like balloons. The footage is on the computer screen of Wang Jiuliang as he edits his second film about waste harming...

Shunyi Foreign Foster Parent of 11 Disappears, Critically Ill Child at Hospital

Michael Wester
Beijinger
The Legal Daily reported Thursday that the girl, called Phoebe, is one of 11 ethnic Chinese foster children the man has been raising in various apartments around Beijing, most recently at Capital Paradise in Shunyi.

China to Expand Input to Fight HIV: Premier

Xinhua
Xinhua
Noting that China still boasts low HIV rates, Chinese Premier Li Keqiang said the government must assume the principle role in combating HIV and would continue to increase input on its prevention and treatment.

Environment

11.26.14

The People’s Republic of Chemicals

from chinadialogue
The name of China is almost obscured by a grey smudge on the title page of The People’s Republic of Chemicals, and this image proves to be apt.  This book examines the crisis caused by toxic&...

Despite Persecution, Guardian of Lake Tai Spotlights China’s Polluters

Andrew Jacobs
New York Times
ZHOUTIE, China — By autumn, the stench of Lake Tai and the freakish green glow of its waters usually fade with the ebbing of the summer heat, but this year is different. Standing on a concrete embankment overlooking a fetid, floating array of...

China’s Regulations on Sale of Birth By-product in Chaos

Hu Qingyun
Global Times
In a cramped, quiet room, several bloody placentas sit in a machine, drying. Some workers then ground them down and filled capsules with the viscera. This gory scene is not from a horror movie but the day-to-day business of an underground placenta...

In Step to Lower Carbon Emissions, China Will Place a Limit on Coal Use in 2020

Edward Wong
New York Times
In theory, coal consumption might increase beyond 2020, but some researchers say economic trends show the rate of growth in coal use slowing in coming years and peaking about 2020.

In China, Even Creating a Pollution Tracking App Is a Risky Business

Steven Millward
Tech in Asia
It was mid-October 2011, and the air quality in Beijing was quite bad, as you may imagine. It came to my mind that if we could check the air quality on our phones and receive pollution notifications, that would be quite helpful and handy. After some...

Media

11.12.14

“Having a Second Kid Isn’t as Simple as Adding Another Pair of Chopsticks”

Alexa Olesen
When China loosened its family planning rules a year ago in November, allowing more couples to have a second child, it was big news. It marked the biggest reform of China's strict family planning rules—which limited most urban couples to one...

Environment

11.11.14

China Reforms National Parks to Improve Environmental Protection

from chinadialogue
China’s central government is reforming the way major tourist attractions are run. It plans to create a unified national parks management system in a bid to halt environmental damage within its protected areas. The new, unified system will cut...

Unable to Clean Air Completely for Apec, China Resorts to Blocking Data

Simon Denyer and Xu Yangjingjing
Washington Post
China has made a gargantuan effort to clear Beijing’s smoggy air for an important regional summit this week, closing hundreds of factories and forcing cars off the road, but its efforts have only been partially successful.

China Criminal Gang Floods Market with 100 Metric Tons of Toxic Tofu

Adam Jourdan
Reuters
The gang added industrial bleaching agent rongalite to make dried tofu sticks brighter and chewier, the Shanghai Daily reported on Monday, citing official media in Shandong province.

Caixin Media

11.10.14

Popular Mental Health Treatment Has No Benefits, Experts Say

A widely used and expensive mental illness treatment that many patients have turned to for help is in the spotlight due to suggestions it offers little help.A college student name Xiaolei and his father travelled more than 500 kilometers from the...