Joint strategy drawn up by governments of three Eastern Chinese regions to reduce emissions
A joint air pollution prevention and control strategy for the Chinese cities of Beijing, Tianjin and the Hebei province has been drawn up by environment officials to tackle concerns over pollution in the areas.
The plan, which has been drafted by the governments in the three Eastern regions, involves the formation of a joint air pollution prevention and control expert committee, which will pool resources and increase cooperation between officials across the area.
Beijing and Tianjin are two of the most populous cities within China, whilst the Hebei province has a population of 72 million, and contains major cities including Shijiazhaung and Baoding.
It will also prioritise the desulphurisation of coal-fired power plants, cement factories and large coal-fired boilers in the region, as well as containing pollution caused by raw coal combustion in the region and improving the treatment of organic compounds emitted by petrochemical businesses in the region.
Measures to tackle pollution from cars has also been considered with efforts to be made to upgrade petrol quality used in vehicles, and phase out the use of old cars.
More effort is set to be placed into sharing data on air pollution through the internet, with a regional air quality forecast and alert system set to be developed.
Air pollution in China and particularly its larger cities has been well-documented over recent years, with dust, coal-fired power station emissions and traffic pollution all contributing to the problem.
According to Greenpeace East Asia, Hebei is the most severely affect region for air pollution in China, with seven out of the top 10 cities with highest PM2.5 levels recorded in 2013 sitting within the region. The cities of Tianjin and Beijing were close runners up, standing at 11th and 13th place respectively.