The emergence of environmental nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) in China is increasingly drawing attention from observers interested in Chinese environmental politics. In the 1980s, the Chinese government started introducing environmental laws as well as seeking assistance from international NGOs, and bilateral and multilateral aid organizations. The 1990s witnessed a shift in government's focus on command and control regulation to more progressive citizen participation and market incentive laws. In fact, many ambitious environmental and energy efficiency targets were included in both the 10th and the 11th five-year plans. This analysis examines the role played by the environmental NGOs in Chinese public policy process. The article begins with an overview of the emergence of NGOs in China. This is followed by an exploration of the different types of environmental NGOs, the political climate, and the contextual environment in which they must operate in order to survive financially. In sum, the analysis discusses the challenges facing NGOs' participation in Chinese environmental policy reform, and concludes with ways to overcome them in order to press forward with their mission.
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