经济学人:中国首位环保人士梁从诫
日期:2012-05-17 11:08

(单词翻译:单击)

Liang Congjie, modern China’s first environmentalist, died on October 28th, aged 78

现代中国首位环保人士梁从诫于10月28日辞世,享年78岁

UNTIL the air began to clog and burn, the rivers turned to sludge and desert sand began to sift into the streets of Beijing, China’s people did not much care what Mao Zedong’s great leap into industrialisation had done to the motherland. Pollution did not happen in socialist countries; it was a -Western, capitalist evil. But Liang Congjie noticed. He realised he no longer saw the blue skies of the Beijing of his boyhood, or the courtyard trees he had loved to climb. In the rugged south of Shanxi province, the water in the mountain streams was now black with coal dust and undrinkable.

在空气变得沉闷酷热、河流变成污泥浊水、沙尘飞临北京街头以前,中国人不太注意毛泽东的工业化大跃进政策为国家带来了什么。社会主义国家是没有污染的,污染是资本主义罪恶,它属于西方。但是,梁从诫对此提出质疑。他发现,他孩提时代的北京蓝天、他儿时乐于攀爬的庭院树木,再也看不到了;晋南山区的溪流而今已被煤尘染成黑色,无法饮用。

As a historian Mr Liang was a traditionalist, sighing sometimes that nothing could surpass the wooden temples of the Tang dynasty; by breeding he was a preservationist, the son of a distinguished architect who had famously sat weeping on the medieval walls of Beijing the night before Mao’s bulldozers demolished them. Some were inclined to think that Mr Liang was less than committed to China’s progress. But he was determined that China should surge forward armed with green sensibility, and a green heart.

作为历史学家,梁先生是一位传统主义者。他间或叹息,没有什么建筑能超越唐时的木质寺院了;梁的父亲是一位杰出的建筑师,曾以在毛泽东的推土机推倒北京古城墙的前夜,坐在墙头哭泣而闻名于世,他把梁先生薰陶成了保护主义者。虽然有人倾向于认为,梁先生的环保成就并不能促进中国进步,但梁先生矢志不移——中国的蓬勃发展,应当是用绿色意识、绿色精神武装起来的蓬勃发展。

Friends of Nature, founded by him in 1994 with three colleagues from the Academy for Chinese Culture, was China’s first legal NGO and the first committed to protecting the country’s environment. At its inaugural meeting it drew 60 members; there are now around 10,000. As Mr Liang proudly said, it was for everybody: housewives, students, food-sellers in the market, even workers from the Capital Steel Corporation factory where Mr Liang, each January, would gather snow in plastic bottles to show schoolchildren the little black specks of pollution in it.

1994年,他与中国文化书院的三位同事共同创建了“自然之友”组织,这是中国首个合法的非政府组织,也是首个致力于保护环境的组织。“自然之友”成立仪式上,只吸引了60名成员,而今已近1万。就像梁先生自豪宣告的那样,人人皆是“自然之友”:家庭主妇、学生、市场上的售食小贩,甚至首钢工人。每年一月,梁先生都会在首钢用塑料瓶收集积雪,为的是向学童们展示——雪中已污染了黑色微粒。

Though based on Western organisations he had seen on television, Friends of Nature was less a lobbying outfit than a club, whose members would go tree-planting, camping and chorus-singing to spread the green message through the land. In the main Beijing office, a homely red-painted house in a courtyard littered with bicycles, visitors would be handed staff cards printed on recycled paper and given metal reusable chopsticks, together with a lecture on how much of China’s virgin forest was disappearing for wooden chopsticks every year. Here, among countless papers and the relentless tap of computers, Mr Liang would be working away in shirt and casual slacks, never raising his soft voice, modest as ever. His bike was among the others outside.

尽管,“自然之友”是以梁先生在电视上看到的西方组织为蓝本,但它更像个俱乐部而不太像一个游说机构。成员们去植树、野营,举行大合唱,意在把绿色理念传到到全国各地。“自然之友”的总部设在北京,是在一座普通的红漆房子里,这座房子又是在一个自行车杂陈的院子里。总部的来访者会得到回收纸印制的名片、可重复使用的金属筷子,同时还听到一场讲解——每一年,中国的许多原始森林是如何因为木筷子而不复存在。在总部那数不清的文山键海中,梁先生身着衬衣便裤工作着,他那温和的说话声从不抬高,总是谦逊有加。他的自行车也和别人的一样,放在户外。

He came to his cause when he was past 60, a dignified figure with greying hair. Most of his professional life had been spent unremarkably, teaching history in universities and compiling a 74-part encyclopedia of China. His family background—American-educated parents, a grandfather renowned as a reformer under the Qing dynasty—made him suspect during the Cultural Revolution, and for nine years he was forced to teach in a cadre school in rural Yunnan. But he was slow to radicalise, and cautious even as his radicalism grew. Not for him the prison or martyrdom route. Instead he joined the right committees, especially in the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference, and used his connections to persuade the government and the media to listen.

德高望重的梁先生是在年过花甲之时投身到绿色事业中来的,那时他已是一头灰发了。他职业生涯的大部分时光都过得平平淡淡,在大学讲授历史,编纂74卷本的中国百科全书。梁的父母接受的是地道的美式教育,祖父因是清时的维新派领袖而名满天下;此般家庭背景使他在文革中受到猜疑。在长达九年的时间里,他被强制下放到云南农村的一所干校任教。不过,他思想激进的演变是缓慢的,即使在他激进思想形成时,也是小心谨慎。于他而言,蹲监狱,或者成为殉道者,都不是他要选择的路。相反,他切合实际地参加种种委员会,尤其是,他成为了中国人民政治协商会议的一员,并利用自已的影响力劝说政府和媒体倾听其意见。

This was delicate work. In China, he always said, there was no point in the sort of dangerous and eye-catching stunts favoured by Greenpeace. He indulged in one or two, handing a letter to Tony Blair, on a visit to China in 1998, to petition him to help save the Tibetan antelope, or bringing in secret cameras to record illegal logging in Sichuan. State goons kept a bit of an eye on him. But in general his campaigns were conducted in an orderly Chinese manner. You did not criticise your parents; instead, you helped with the housework. Similarly, you did not attack the government; instead, you reminded it that there were laws already on the books to protect the land, the water and the air, and offered to help enforce them.

环保工作需要谨慎为之。他经常说,在中国,像“绿色和平组织”那样,喜欢搞些有几分危险和引人注目的招式来推动工作是不识时务的。他就曾放任过自己一两次,1998年托尼?布莱尔访华之际,他写信请求其帮助拯救藏羚羊;曾带上摄像机秘密拍摄四川的非法砍伐。政府打手曾对他小有注意。但从整体上看,他是以中国人易于接受的方式采取行动。不批评父母,而是帮助父母做家务。同理,不攻击政府,而是提醒政府已经有了保护土地、水体和大气的成文法,并愿意为实施这些法律献力。

Within these self-described limits, Mr Liang and his NGO notched up several famous victories. He managed to stop the cutting of virgin forest (and the destruction of golden monkey habitat) in Yunnan province. With others, he killed proposals to build giant dams on the Salween river and in one of the most spectacular gorges of the Yangzi. The Tibetan antelope, hunted almost to extinction for the fineness of its fur, remained his favourite cause, and he went to the icy plateau to burn sequestered skins himself—though, to his sorrow, he could not stop the disbanding of the heroic anti-poaching brigade and the transfer of patrols to corruptible local officials. He was sure, he said diplomatically, that the government would do all it could.

梁先生和他的“自然之友”按照自我设定的前述行为尺度,赢得了几场著名的胜利。他成功阻止了对云南原始森林的砍伐,由此也阻止了对金丝猴栖息地的破坏。与他人合作,终止了在怒江和长江最壮观的峡谷之一修建堤坝的提议。藏羚羊因其毛皮精致,几乎被猎杀殆尽,对它们的保护仍是梁先生的重点目标,他曾登上冰冷的高原,亲自烧掉查获的毛皮。即使他痛心不已——无力阻止英勇的反偷猎队的解散、巡逻职责交给易腐败的地方官员,但他仍以婉转方式表示,相信地方政府会尽其所能。

Kestrels in the smog

雾中红隼

His proudest achievement, however, was to start environmental awareness in China. Where FON led, some 3,000 NGOs have followed. His “Project Hope” sends out buses, painted with an antelope, to rural villages, to teach schoolchildren to treasure flowers, streams and woods. His bird-spotting book encourages residents of Beijing to look out, through the still-smoggy air, for egrets and kestrels. “Mr Liang’s heart, very sensitive, very soft,” wrote a sad Chinese blogger after his death. All hearts should be so soft, he would have said, the better to plant green seeds in.

不过,中国由此萌发了环保意识让他最感自豪。在中国,以“自然之友”为先导,相继有约3,000个相应组织得以建立。他的“希望工程”乘上画着藏羚羊的巴士出发,来到乡村,告诉学童们要珍爱花草、溪流和树林。他的观鸟著作使北京居民透过仍旧烟雾弥漫的天空,找寻白鹭和红隼。他去世后,一位悲伤的中国博主写到“梁先生的心地非常细腻温柔”。如果梁先生在天有灵,他一定会说:所有人的心地都应该是温柔的,在温柔的心地上播撒绿色的种子是再好不过的了。

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重点单词
  • persuadevt. 说服,劝说
  • determinedadj. 坚毅的,下定决心的
  • revolutionn. 革命,旋转,转数
  • traditionalistn. 因循守旧者;传统主义者 adj. 传统主义者的(等
  • gatherv. 聚集,聚拢,集合 n. 集合,聚集
  • radicalismn. 急进主义,根本的改革主义
  • extinctionn. 消失,消减,废止
  • distinguishedadj. 卓著的,尊敬的 动词distinguish的过
  • routen. 路线,(固定)线路,途径 vt. 为 ... 安排
  • architectn. 建筑师