China Focuses on Local Air Quality

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China has made progress in combating environmental pollution, but apparently it still has a lot to do to improve its overall air quality.

The Better Air Quality 2012 conference, organized by Clean Air Asia in Hong Kong recently, was hopeful about the effectiveness of mitigating measures rather than people adapting to poor air quality. Soon after the conference, the Chinese government announced new air pollution reduction plan, which is aimed at cutting gas emissions and pollutants and reflects a change in emphasis.

China will cut the PM2.5 intensity by at least 5 percent by 2015 in 13 major areas covering 117 cities, according to a plan issued by the Ministry of Environment Protection. The levels of other pollutants such as PM10 and SO2 (sulfur dioxide) will be reduced by 10 percent while that of NO2 (nitrogen dioxide) will be cut by 7 percent.

China has also vowed to release hourly air pollution data for 74 of its biggest cities from Jan 1 in response to the increasing environmental concern among its citizens. Of late, an increasing number of Chinese people have been complaining against pollution and murky gray skies in cities.

The monitoring will include not only PM2.5, but also SO2, NO2, ozone and carbon monoxide, and data will be collected from 496 monitoring stations.

Read the rest at China Daily