Michelle Ker was formerly a Research Fellow with the Natural Resources Defense Council’s China Environmental Law & Governance Project based in Beijing. Her main research interests are in Chinese environmental governance, focusing in particular on environmental law, transparency, and monitoring and enforcement. Before joining NRDC, Michelle worked with the Stimson Center and the International Crisis Group on rule of law reform and human rights issues. She is currently a graduate student at the George Washington University’s Elliott School of International Affairs.

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A series of high-profile environmental disasters in 2013, including northern China’s winter “airpocalypse” and the discovery of thousands of dead pigs littering Shanghai’s main water source, have indelibly illustrated the stakes of not enacting stronger environmental policies. In recent years, the Chinese government’s policies have started to …

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