China’s smog restrictions will start taking effect in late 2018 and could affect the lives of many of its citizens, and will be felt far beyond Beijing, according to an analysis of air quality data from China’s Ministry of Environmental Protection (MEP).
Read more about the smog in China.
Read more On March 1, China banned coal-fired power plants and large-scale industries from burning coal, including factories and transport, and also ordered local governments to restrict outdoor outdoor air pollution.
The regulations were announced by China’s President Xi Jinping, a former coal miner who is known for his aggressive efforts to boost the country’s economy and its share of global coal production.
The move came just days after China announced a second set of limits, with the first set for May 5.
Beijing’s environmental watchdog issued an order to the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) on April 2 to issue a report on the environmental impacts of the smogs.
A draft of the report, which will be published this month, found that the smoggiest cities and counties in China had the worst air quality, with Beijing in particular having the highest level of air pollution, according a summary provided by the ministry.
Its findings echoed those of the World Health Organization (WHO), which said in March that Beijing’s air quality was worse than Beijing’s Tiananmen Square, where Communist Party leaders were assassinated in 1989.
Read the WHO report here.
Chinese PM Xi Jinping arrives at a coal mine in Tiananman Square in Beijing, China, on February 24, 2021.
In March, China said it was imposing a ban on new coal-burning power plants for the first time since 2003, in a move aimed at fighting the countrys smog.
On Thursday, the National People’s Congress approved the final draft of a new air quality law, setting limits for the number of hours outdoors, and setting limits on the number and types of products that can be sold in cities.
More than 100 cities, including Beijing, are expected to be hit by the new limits, according an AFP report.
“The countrys air pollution is a big threat to people’s health,” Zhang Zhimin, director of the Beijing Municipal Environmental Protection Department, told reporters on Thursday.
Zhang said the government has been working hard to implement the law, which is expected to go into effect on April 1.
“We have already launched the implementation of the law,” Zhang said.
“There are many measures in place to ensure the environment and people’s safety.”
Read more on the pollution in China