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Qin Tianbao and Zhou Chen
As its name indicates, this chapter describes an overall picture in which Chinese concurrent environmental laws have been formulated, implemented and enforced and then further developed, with all the necessary background information for a better understanding through a broader perspective. Several general and crucial issues are under intense discussion here, such as the basic Chinese situation on environmental degradation, its history of domestic environmental legislation and its institutional construction. Basically, this chapter adopts a holistic approach, taking a global view but with a focus on the regional and domestic levels. The element of time is important when we are trying to deepen the analysis on some key issues. For instance, we illustrate, briefly, the evolvement of the 1989 Environmental Protection Law, in particular its latest amendment released in 2014. In addition, Chapter 1 contributes to the entire book, by identifying the striking Chinese characters. These much-needed indigenous features are likely to be verified, where possible, in the rest of the chapters that each deal with individual specific areas. In the final part of this chapter the scope and stricture of the proposed handbook is outlined for guidance.