Waste management and environmentalism in China
Waste management and environmentalism in China

Start this free course now. Just create an account and sign in. Enrol and complete the course for a free statement of participation or digital badge if available.

Free course

Waste management and environmentalism in China


This free course, Waste management and environmentalism in China, has shown how the rapid growth in the production and consumption of goods in China has given rise to exceptional amounts of waste, and this trend is expected to continue. Historically, the management of many wastes has been uncontrolled and has led to environmental damage and health concerns. China has started to put in place better environmental strategies to collect and treat waste, but more progress needs to be made, particularly in bringing together informal and formal means of collecting and treating municipal solid waste (MSW).

Adopting a circular economy approach and developing eco-industrial parks have helped deliver some resource efficiencies and increase recycling of some industrial wastes. However, it is early days and it remains to be seen whether China will fully deliver a circular economy.

In addition, from a beginning of championing biodiversity, Chinese environmental groups have developed and nurtured a new generation of environmental activists who increasingly have social media tools at their disposal. Growing awareness and this kind of ‘soft’ political activism may not always translate into action, however, given the cumbersome nature of Chinese bureaucracy, tensions between local and national politics, and competition for funding.

This OpenLearn course is an adapted extract from the Open University course U116 Environment: journeys through a changing world [Tip: hold Ctrl and click a link to open it in a new tab. (Hide tip)] .


Take your learning further

Making the decision to study can be a big step, which is why you'll want a trusted University. The Open University has 50 years’ experience delivering flexible learning and 170,000 students are studying with us right now. Take a look at all Open University courses.

If you are new to University-level study, we offer two introductory routes to our qualifications. You could either choose to start with an Access module, or a module which allows you to count your previous learning towards an Open University qualification. Read our guide on Where to take your learning next for more information.

Not ready for formal University study? Then browse over 1000 free courses on OpenLearn and sign up to our newsletter to hear about new free courses as they are released.

Every year, thousands of students decide to study with The Open University. With over 120 qualifications, we’ve got the right course for you.

Request an Open University prospectus371