Wang Enlin, from Yushutun village, in China’s Heilongjiang Province, will never forget that day in 2001, when his village and farmland were flooded with toxic waste. On the eve of the Lunar New Year, villagers notice that the house they were in was being flooded with waste water from the nearby Qihua Group, a State-owned enterprise. Wang wrote a letter to the Land Resources Bureau of Qiqihar, complaining about the pollution, but he was repeatedly asked to provide evidence that his village indeed been contaminated.
But Wang Enlin would not give up so easily, and even though he had only attended school until Third Grade, he decided to study law himself and find out what kind of evidence he needed to collect. Due to unknown complications, the trial against Qihua Group only began in 2015, as Wang and the other villagers have recently won the first instance at the Angangxi District Court of Qiqihar. A judge ordered the chemical company to compensate the residents of Yushutun village. Also to clear the waste in the surrounding area over the last 16 years.