Recently, the Ministry of Ecology and Environment of the People’s Republic of China issued the “Opinion to Guide Local Governments to Implement the System of Reporting and Rewarding Illegal Acts of Ecological Environment” (hereinafter referred to as the “Opinion”), aiming to guide all regions to establish the reward system for reporting illegal behaviors in the ecological environment.
The Opinion is divided into three parts: general requirements, improvement of the design of reporting reward system, strengthening of organization guarantee, and implementation. The Opinion is put forward on the departments, objects, and conditions of the award, scope, and form of award, review, and confirmation of illegal clues, award release procedures, whistleblower protection, system guarantee, fund supervision, publicity, and training. The Opinion pointed out that all localities should adhere to the correct guidance, focus on winning the crucial battle of pollution prevention and control, solve the outstanding ecological and environmental problems around the people, and give full play to the driving and demonstration role of reporting rewards. According to the Opinion, the department that implements the reward is generally the ecological environment department that makes the decision of administrative punishment. Encourage whistleblowers to report in real name according to law, and encourage insiders of enterprises to report. To avoid major ecological environment violations, eliminate major ecological environment security risks, or assist in the investigation and handling of major ecological environment violations, the whistleblower can be given a heavy award. According to the Opinion, all localities should make clear the scope and standard of awards, pay attention to the combination of material awards and spiritual awards, and explore the use of electronic payment and other convenient ways to pay bonuses. The Opinion also stressed the need to strengthen the protection of whistleblowers and required all localities to further enhance the sense of responsibility and confidentiality, reduce the acquisition of unnecessary personal information, strictly keep the personal information of whistleblowers confidential, and adopt the way conducive to the protection of whistleblowers to pay bonuses.
The establishment and implementation of the report and reward system is an important measure to implement the spirit of the Fourth Plenary Session of the 19th Central Committee of the Communist Party of China, realize the modernization of the ecological environment governance system and governance capacity, and also an important measure to continuously deepen the reform of “release-management-service” and strengthen and standardize the post supervision in the event. By fully mobilizing the masses and orderly participating in the report according to law, it can effectively make up for the shortboard and blind area of grass-roots ecological environment law enforcement and supervision, effectively solve the prominent ecological environment problems around the people, and build a large pattern of social co-governance of ecological environment protection.
According to statistics, at present, 12 provincial and 133 municipal ecological environment departments have established and implemented the system of reporting and reward, and 155 relevant regulations have been issued by the provinces and the cities. In 2018, 9,034 reports and rewards were implemented in all regions, with the amount of 4.3624 million RMB. In 2019, the total budget of rewards for local reports reached 12.82 million RMB. Valuable experience has been accumulated in various areas. For example, in some places, rewards for reporting were already launched in 2001; in some places, there are provisions on reporting and rewarding in specific fields for the frequent violations of the local ecological environment; some places have set up prizes of up to 100,000 RMB; some local ecological and environmental departments and financial departments jointly issue documents, and incorporate the incentive funds into the financial budget; in some places, in addition to the traditional bonus, the bonus is also distributed through WeChat “Red Packet” and other convenient ways. The introduction of the Opinion will further improve the top-level design of the reporting and reward system at the national level, and promote the local government to comprehensively establish and implement the system.
The Ministry of Ecology and Environment requires that by the end of June 2020, the provincial department of the ecological environment shall establish and implement a reporting and reward system. By the end of 2020, the municipal ecological and environmental departments divided into districts shall establish and implement a report and reward system. The Ministry of Ecology and Environment emphasized that all localities should make the relevant provisions, ways, and channels of reporting rewards public, and take the reporting reward system as the focus of publicity work, and carry out continuous and targeted publicity and interpretation work.
Original Chinese article:
By / Xue Tongtong Modified / Maggie