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List of Environmental Organizations Working in China

November 28, 2011
Walking down the stairs with the glacier in the background
A few tourists walking down the path from the Mingyong Glacier (left). The path was funded by the Nature Conservancy (TNC).

A former professor recently contacted me to advise a current student of his on their interest in interning at an NGO in China, which lead me to relate some of the experience I’ve gleaned in the past year. This experience brought to mind the usefulness of a chart I created in my research of NGOs working here in China.

I have posted the list below. By no means do I consider it comprehensive; I invite additions and criticism. I have listed only those organizations with offices in China, which excludes several important organizations doing environmental projects in China such as China Green of the Asia Society, the Pacific Environment Institute in San Francisco, and the Washington D.C.-based China Environment Forum of the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars. I have seen a couple of other lists elsewhere, but they seemed out of date.

If the name is only in Chinese, the organization has few, if any, English resources, and thus would not be helpful for someone without Chinese skills.

List of Organizations Doing Environmental Protection Work in China

  • International*
  1. The Mountain Institute, Beijing with field offices in Shangri-La and Chengdu
  2. World Resources Institute
  3. Natural Resources Defense Council
  4. Greenpeace
  5. World Wide Fund For Nature with ~10 field offices and Beijing
  6. The Nature Conservancy office in Lijiang and Kunming
  7. China Sustainable Energy Program (BJ, SF) under the Energy Foundation
  8. Clean Air Initiative (UN mandate)
  9. Innovation Center for Energy and Transportation (iCET)
  10. Environmental Defense Fund (office in Beijing)
  11. China Greentech Initiative (run primarily by foreigners, though based in China)
  12. International Fund for China’s Environment Based in DC, branch offices in Beijing, Shanghai, Shenzhen, Wuhan as well as the Yunnan Natural and Cultural Heritage Conservation Council.
  13. Clean Air Initiative
  14. Institution for Transportation and Development Policy office in Guangzhou. GZ BRT project, projects in Harbin, Lanzhou, Wuhan. Several international offices.
  15. Conservation International
  16. Save China’s Tigers (Hong Kong)
  17. United Nations Environment Programme
  18. WildAid
  19. Jane Goodall’s Roots and Shoots Shanghai; youth-based activism.
  20. International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources (IUCN)
  21. US-China Environmental Fund (Panda Mountain)
  22. Institute for Sustainable Communities China division based in SH, offices in BJ and GZ as well
  • Beijing
  1. 公众环境研究中心 (Institute of Public and Environmental Affairs IPE)
  2. 绿色之星环保人合作组织
  3. 自然景象环境保护协会 (CNature Conservation Association)
  4. 绿色北京
  5. 曾经草原
The Nature Consevancy Signs

Local folk-lore lines the trail to the Mingyong Glacier, signs from TNC

  1. 山水自然保护中心
  2. 北京国仁绿色联盟
  3. 长江黄河国际文化交流中心
  4. 北京地球环村境教育中心
  5. 自然之友
  6. 国际爱护动物基金会
  7. 大学生绿色营
  8. 北京天下溪教育咨询中心
  9. 新疆自然保育基金 (Xinjiang Conservation Fund)
  10. 北京富平学校 (Fuping Development Institute)
  11. 绿家园志愿者
  12. 道和环境与发展研究所 (Institute for Environment and Development)
  13. 福群环境研究院
  14. 全球环境研究所 (Global Environment Institute: GEI) Initial partnership with a US NGO, but US partner dissolved in 2011. Sustainable development, capacity-building.
  15. 中华环境保护基金会
  16. 北京人与动物环保科普中心 (BHAEEC)
  17. 绿色记者沙龙
  18. Wetlands International
  • Yunnan
  1. Yunnan EcoNetwork
  2. Yunnan Environmental Development Institute (YEDI) German affiliation
  3. Green Watershed
  4. Green Kunming Run by owners of Salvador’s-American affiliation. Focus on organic food.
  5. Center for Biodiversity and Traditional Knowledge (云南省生物多样性和传统知识研究会)
  6. Yunnan Health and Development Research Association (云南省健康与发展研究会) description of their work here (Eng).
  7. Initiative Development biodigester CDM, French-affiliation
  • Sichuan
A woman walking her herd of cows

Environmental organizations in China have made a powerful push for the formation of national parks such as the Tiger Leaping Gorge

  1. Chengdu Urban Rivers Association
  2. Sichuan Green Rivers (四川省绿色江河环境保护)
  3. 济溪环境交流网络
  4. 甘孜州生物多样性与生态文化协会
  • Gansu
  1. Green Camel Bell (绿驼铃) education, desertification, water
  • Anhui
  1. Green Anhui

*Main office in Beijing unless otherwise noted.

2 Comments leave one →
  1. November 29, 2011 20:50

    Hat tip to Angela Ni for suggesting I include two key organizations conducting projects in Southwestern China: the Yunnan Health and Development Research Association (云南省健康与发展研究会), and Initiative Development.

  2. June 13, 2012 07:12

    excellent list!

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