China – Stakeholder Engagement Demonstration

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Date started
2012
Funders
European Union (EU) & RBF
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This project adapted stakeholder engagement methods from the West to China’s situation.

The project conducted in-depth assessments, case studies and consultations regarding existing policies, tools and protocols dealing with public participation in environmental remediation in China, EU and other selected developed countries, as well as their evolutionary trends. These resulting in a protocol which aims to guide governments through public relations in the remediation process, and to be a technical reference for supporting implementation of relevant policies. The protocol defines the relevant stakeholders, describes methods and the extent of current public participation in China, and details public participation for pre-, mid- and post-side remediation.

Government officials, researchers and villagers in 5 communities participated in testing the ‘Handbook for Public Participation in the Contaminated Arable Lands Remediation in China’ and its methodology in soil remediation, in two pilot areas. The pilot projects demonstrated how engaging the public in an open, transparent manner can benefit effective implementation of relevant policies. They demonstrated improvement of community relations and trust and potential sustainability of implemented remediation projects. These findings were incorporated into the Protocol.

The project organized a national policy workshop and workshops at provincial, regional and country level. Brochures, posters and letters to villagers were distributed, interviews were conducted by provincial and local major media, and core elements of the protocol were presented at key workshops and conferences jointly organized by local governments, national research institutions, and multinational environmental consulting firms.