Each spring, U.S.-Asia Partnerships for Environmental Law (PEL) Associate Director Yanmei Lin teaches a course in Comparative Environmental Law Research. This year, Professor Lin’s students Amanda Carrington (JD ’19) and XinXin Wang (LLM ’18) teamed up to explore the emerging role of environmental public interest litigation and the courts in advancing renewable energy deployment. Through their research paper Carrington and Wang closely analyzed a newly filed case, Beijing Chaoyang District Friends of Nature Research Institute v. State Grid Gansu Electric Power Company, and formed recommendations for China’s Lanzhou Intermediate People’s Court on how to proceed given the legal context in China and drawing from lessons in U.S. environmental litigation.
The students submitted their paper to Sun Yat-sen University (SYSU) which was planning a high summit on Environmental and Natural Resource Rule of Law in China. The paper was accepted into the conference proceedings and in March PEL was able to send Carrington to Guangzhou, China to participate in this conference with Professor Lin. At the forum, Professor Lin presented on her own paper discussing the assumptions of and problems with current ecological restoration remedies.
Carrington reflects, “I had a blast on my trip to China. My first stop was to Guangzhou for the conference. I met many wonderful people and was warmly greeted by everyone. Although I was running off of very little sleep from the night before, I was energized to meet everyone for Saturday’s events. I had trouble understanding all of the speakers because it was not translated into English, but Yanmei Lin helped translate. The topics were all interesting and the viewpoints on how to handle environmental public interest litigation. The proposed solutions were very theoretical. Because the court system differs from the U.S. the proposal seemed almost unachievable. However, from a Chinese perspective, these solutions were feasible. I was able to travel around Guangzhou with a VLS alumna on Saturday night after the conference and on Sunday. Guangzhou is a beautiful city with delicious food. Luckily, I traveled with BingCheng and her colleagues, who knew a little bit about the city. I could not have asked for a better experience. Overall, the trip was amazing and I cannot wait to travel back to China in the future.”
Fortunately, both Professor Qiu Xin, an energy law expert from Jinan University, and Professor Wu Peng from Anhui University attended the conference and were able to provide valuable insight and feedback on Carrington and Wang’s paper. PEL is thrilled that we could provide this opportunity for a VLS student and continue to look for ways to highlight our students’ work at international platforms.