Environment

Pollution level in China’s three metropolitan areas dropped nearly 40%

The PM 2.5 levels in three main metropolitan areas: Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei, Yangtze River Delta and Pearl River Delta were down   | Photo Credit: REUTERS

China has made a remarkable achievement by reducing the pollution level by nearly 40% in the three main metropolitan areas, including Beijing, by putting in place the world’s largest clean coal-fired power generation system, according to Minister of Environmental Protection Li Ganjie.

China, the world’s biggest polluter, has a four-tier colour-coded warning system for severe weather, with red being the most serious, followed by orange, yellow and blue.

Li said China has installed the world’s largest clean coal-fired power generation system over the past five years by completing the “ultra-low emission” transformation of coal- fired power plants. The transformation has resulted in 83% decrease in sulfur dioxide emission, 50% cut in nitrogen oxides, and 67%reduction in smoke dust, Li said.

From January to November, 338 Chinese cities saw a combined 20.4% reduction in particulate matter PM10, compared to that in 2013. The PM2.5 levels in three main metropolitan areas: Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei, Yangtze River Delta and Pearl River Delta were down 38.2%, 31.7% and 25.6%respectively, Li said.

Beijing and northern cities suffered smog and heavy pollution specially in winter for several years as they went through heavy industrialisation. The government has been cracking down heavily in the last few years by removing coal- fired industries. The central government unveiled a five-year national clean air action plan in 2013, aiming to improve air quality through measures such as closing factories, limiting cars and replacing coal with clean energy.

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Printable version | Mar 4, 2021 11:35:10 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/sci-tech/energy-and-environment/pollution-level-in-chinas-three-metropolitan-areas-dropped-nearly-40/article21390452.ece

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