This 60-Year-Old Chinese Farmer Taught Himself The Law So He Could Sue A Chemical Company And Won

60-year-old farmer Wang Enlin taught himself the law for 16 years to sue a chemical company that was polluting his village.

This 60-Year-Old Chinese Farmer Taught Himself The Law So He Could Sue A Chemical Company And Won

A 60-year-old Chinese farmer taught himself the law for 16 years in order to sue a company that was polluting his village and won.

Wang Enlin (王恩林) only obtained a primary school education and became a farmer in the northeastern Qiqihar city in Heilongjiang Province, China.

chinese farmer wang enlin self learn law and sue the chemical company

In 2001, Wang realized that the Qiqihar Chemical Group, a state-owned enterprise, had been discharging its chemical wastewater into the local fields, without any treatment.

A document released later said that the company had dumped about 15,000 to 20,000 tons of  poly vinyl chloride (PVC), which contain some of the most dangerous and toxic chemicals, around fields every year.

Soon after, Wang submitted an anonymous letter of complaint to the government, but his case was dismissed when he wasn’t able to produce evidence.

“I knew I was in the right, but I did not know what law the other party had broken or whether or not there was evidence,” Wang told the DailyMail.

wang enling chinese farmer self taught law sue chemical company

With insufficient funds to seek legal counsel, Wang took it upon himself to study the law and figure out how he could hold the company accountable for the pollution.

Wang would go the local bookstore and copy the necessary information by hand and eventually compensated the shopkeeper with a bag of corn.

He helped gather evidence for his case and of his fellow neighbors.

In 2015, the case finally went to court and Wang won against the corporation.

The court ordered Qiqihar Chemical Group to compensate 55 households for a total of around 820,000 yuan (approximately USD$112,700).

wang enling chinese farmer learn law and sue chemical company

A document indicated that the use of another chemical, calcium carbide residue, had basically made acres of land unusable.

Wang’s fight is far from finished, as the corporation has filed an appeal and the case has been sent back for retrial.

“We will certainly win. Even if we lose, we will continue to battle,” Wang said, according to the Daily Mail.

Wang has also represented numerous farmers who are inexperienced with the law in land acquisition and other legal matters.

In their free time, Wang and his peers founded an environmental organization, assessing the present state of fields and agriculture.

You Might Also Be Interested In

German Youth Activists Sued The Government For Not Doing Enough To Reduce Emissions And Won
In A Historic Referendum, People In Ecuador Have Voted To Protect The Amazon By Stopping Oil Drilling

Subscribe To The Almost Newsletter For More