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Chinese farmers are illegally growing GMO corn: Greenpeace [Reuters]

A Greenpeace investigation uncovered rampant growth of illegal strains of GE corn in Liaoning Province. A whopping 93% of random field and market samples tested positive for GE’s. This is particularly shocking as growth of GE crops in China is completely illegal and the scale of growth discovered indicates that GMO corn is very likely already on Chinese dinner tables across the country. Yesterday the Liaoning government responded, pledging to investigate the allegations. Find out more here.

China to suspend new coal mine approvals amid pollution fight [Bloomberg]

China has suspended approval for new coal mines for 3 years and will be closing 1000 further coal mines over the course of 2016. This is fantastic, surprising news- a clear signal that the government is throwing serious weight behind the air pollution battle and is a big step in the race towards renewables! More here.

 

How Baoding City copes with month-long red alert [Jakarta Post]

While the world’s media went crazy for Beijing’s red alert,  most missed that Baoding in Hebei Province (which has previously held the title of most polluted city in China) was under Red Alert for an entire month.

Zimbabwe plans to sell elephants and lions to China to fund conservation [Guardian]

 

Zimbabwe’s plan to sell elephants and lions to China has been a cause for concern for conservationists this week. The funds are intended to be used to combat poaching, but animal rights watchdogs are worried that the lower standards of care will mean that the elephants will be inhumanely treated. Plans to export lions and chimpanzees are also in the works. Zimbabwe’s environment minister defended the decision, saying:  “We will not apologise to anyone. Not even once because they are our elephants and our people live with a huge population of elephants and bear the trouble of interacting with them.”

 How China’s new air law aims to curb pollution [China Dialogue]

 

China’s newly minted Air Law came into effect on January 1 this year. The law focuses on increasing accountability of polluters, rewarding whistle blowers and enforcing stricter emissions monitoring standards for big emitters.