01 Mar 2012:
Chinese Leaders Approve
New Rules to Reduce Air Pollution
Bowing to increasing public concern about poor air quality, the Chinese government has approved strict new air pollution standards
, including tougher rules for ozone and for particulate matter smaller than 2.5
micrometers in diameter. The new rules, approved during an executive meeting of the State Council and published online, order tougher air standards beginning this year in major cities such as Beijing, Shanghai, Chongqing, and Tinjin; 27 provincial capitals; and three heavily industrialized regions. Another 113 cities must adopt the new standards by next year, and all but the nation’s smallest cities must comply by 2015. According to the announcement, the council also pledged to improve the quality of gasoline and raise auto emissions standards
. Ma Jun
, director of the Institute of Public and Environmental Affairs, called the standards “a major step forward” in addressing air pollution in China. “It doesn’t mean that the sky will turn blue automatically because at the end of the day we still need to cut off these emissions,” he said.
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Tribal people and ranchers join together to stop a project that would haul coal across their Montana land. Watch the video.
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An aerial view of why Europe’s per capita carbon emissions are less than 50 percent of those in the U.S. View the photos.
Ugandan scientists monitor the impact of climate change on one of Africa’s most diverse forests and its extraordinary wildlife. Learn more.
video series looks at the staggering amount of food wasted in the U.S. – a problem with major human and environmental costs. Watch the video.
video goes onto the front lines with Colorado firefighters confronting deadly blazes fueled by a hotter, drier climate. Watch the video.
A three-part series Tainted Harvest
looks at the soil pollution crisis in China, the threat it poses to the food supply, and the complexity of any cleanup. Read the series.