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City sets price for air pollution / by Fan Junmei, April 8, 2016 Adjust font size:

Zhengzhou is enveloped in smog on March 15, 2015. [Xinhua]

Zhengzhou is enveloped in smog on March 15, 2015. [Xinhua]

Local authorities will be fined up to 500,000 yuan (US$77,200) if the PM2.5 concentrations in their administrative regions are a single microgram higher than permitted, according to an environment protection regulation newly adopted by Zhengzhou Municipal Government in central China's Henan Province.

To improve its air quality, Zhengzhou has set specific targets for this year—concentrations of the PM2.5 and PM10 shall not surpass 150 and 79 micrograms per cubic meter, respectively.

Authorities at the county level will be awarded 500,000 yuan (US$77,200) if their pollutant concentrations are one microgram lower than the newly adopted standards. Otherwise, they will be fined the same amount of money.

Any county that reports substandard air quality for three consecutive months will be ordered to shut down all sources of pollution.

Zhengzhou has been plagued by air pollution for a long time. Every month last year, with the exception of November, the city was ranked as one of the ten most polluted cities in China. It was still on the "black" list in the first two months of 2016.