Chai Jing

TIME 100 2015 Jing Chai
Tao Xiaofang—Imaginechina/AP

Green fighter

Chai Jing’s 2015 documentary on pollution, Under the Dome, is one of the most important pieces of environmental awareness building ever in China. Her very personal and powerful story is one that millions of people in China can relate to, which points to the reason it was viewed 200 million times just days after it was first broadcast. Her background as an investigative reporter shines through as she weaves together complex scientific and policy issues into a coherent and compelling narrative that has empowered ordinary Chinese to join a policy debate for the first time. In fact, the documentary has made even those who are cynical and indifferent express their desire to join the fight against pollution. Such vast public support, if properly harnessed, could play a profound role in China’s crucial but challenging drive toward sustainability over the next 20 years.

Ma is a Chinese environmentalist and journalist

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