Chinese man is first to sue govt over smog

BEIJING (TIP): A man in a smog- ridden northern city has become the first person in China to sue the government for failing to curb air pollution, a state-run newspaper reported on February 26.

China’s north is suffering a pollution crisis, with the capital Beijing itself shrouded in acrid smog. Authorities have introduced anti-pollution policies and often pledged to clean up the environment but the problem has not eased. Li Guixin, a resident of Shijiazhuang, capital of the northern province of Hebei, submitted his complaint to a district court asking the city’s Municipal Environmental Protection Bureau to “perform its duty to control air pollution according to the law” , the Yanzhao Metropolis Daily said.

He is also seeking compensation from the agency for residents for the choking pollution that has engulfed Shijiazhuang , and much of northern China, this winter. “The reason that I’m proposing administrative compensation is to let every citizen see that amid this haze, we’re the real victims,” Li was quoted as saying by the daily. It was unclear whether the court would accept Li’s lawsuit. His lawyer, Wu Yufen, declined to comment, telling Reuters “this information is quite sensitive” . Officials of the court could not be reached for comment.

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