Chinese environmental activist Ma Jun will be in San Francisco on Monday, April 23 to receive the coveted Goldman Environmental Prize, for “bringing unprecedented environmental transparency and empowering Chinese citizens to demand justice”. Ma’s descriptions of pollution problems and industry’s deleterious effect on China’s environment have prompted not only the government but also large corporations like Apple to confront the issues. Due to its rapid industrial and economic growth, China is experiencing problems with air and water quality, as well as reports of lead poisoning.
Ma has recently moved from electronics to the textile industry, with a focus on water pollution and other hidden side effects of the many products Chinese and Americans consume on a daily basis. His goal is to improve transparency of data about pollution by the government and multinational firms while also enabling citizen participation in China.