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December 27, 2011

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Home » Metro » Environment

Multi-pronged path to clean air

WITH the promise of ensuring that 90 percent of all days have good to excellent air quality, local environmental officials yesterday announced a plan to renovate technology at power plants, clean up vehicle emissions, control the amount of flying dirt, improve companies' reclaiming of volatile organic compounds and improve restaurants' control of oil fumes.

The action plan is part of the new round of three-year environmental protection that starts next year, the environmental watchdog said. Also in the plan, announced previously, is public disclosure of PM2.5 - airborne particles less than 2.5 micrometers in diameter.

Currently, Shanghai reports only sulfur dioxide, nitrogen dioxide and less sensitive particular matter PM10 in its daily air-quality report, while monitoring PM2.5 has been carried out since 2005 in the city.

The plan's draft was released on the Shanghai Environmental Protection Bureau's website and is open for public response until Saturday through e-mail, fax and letters. The final version of the three-year plan will be announced early next year.

Covering the areas of most environmental concern, the draft addresses water quality, air quality, solid waste processing, recycling, noise control, industrial pollution and restructuring, agriculture and rural environment, ecological environment and clean manufacturing.

Targeting acid rain, haze and ozone, the authorities will widely promote the control of sulfur dioxide, nitrogen oxide, volatile organic compounds and fine atmospheric particulate matters, the draft said.

According to air-quality officials, Shanghai has failed to meet a proposed air quality standard on PM2.5 for the past five years.

PM2.5 refers to tiny particles that affect not only visibility but human health.

Fu Qingyan, chief engineer at the Shanghai Environmental Monitoring Center, said yesterday that the city's PM2.5 data release will be launched soon after the national standard is officially announced.

The particles are the product of combustion from motor vehicles, power plants, and other sources.

Cutting pollution from power plants, eliminating 60,000 higher-polluting gasoline and diesel cars and developing clean energies are included in the draft.


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