China recently amended its civil procedure law to allow nongovernmental organizations to sue on behalf of the public interest. This provision could be transformative, and Chinese NGOs will have to learn quickly how to litigate public interest lawsuits. There has been only one public interest case brought by a grassroots NGO to look to and learn from so far: a pending case brought by two NGOs over illegal chromium pollution in Yunnan province. The speakers at this panel will discuss how and why public interest law has become a “hot” topic among the law, policy, and NGO communities. They will discuss the facts of this case as well as the obstacles the attorneys have faced. They will also analyze why this case was accepted, unlike the many others that have been rejected. Finally, they will analyze the implications of what we know about this case for future environmental public interest cases.

This event is cosponsored with Vermont Law School

The event summary is available here.


  • Jessica Scott

    Attorney at U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Office of General Counsel
  • Jingjing Liu

    Vermont Law School
  • Robert V. Percival

    Robert F. Stanton Professor of Law and the Director of the Environmental Law Program at the University of Maryland Carey School of Law.