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Enterprises Urged to Play Part in Air Quality Drill

Beijing yesterday urged enterprises, factories and construction sites to reduce their pollutants and emissions during the upcoming vehicle-reduction drill.

All polluting sources must ensure their emissions meet the required standards so as to avoid affecting the drill, the municipal government said.

To improve air quality and ease traffic congestion during the Olympic Games next year, the government has ordered nearly half of the 3 million vehicles in the city off the roads from August 17 to 20.

The drill is to examine the correlation between air quality and the number of vehicles on the road.

The reduction of vehicle emissions is a key solution to improving air quality and is in accordance with international practice, He Kebin, a professor of the Tsinghua University was quoted as saying by Beijing Evening News.

The results of the correlation test will be more accurate when pollutants from coal burners, construction sites and industrial factories are put under control, Du Shaozhong, deputy head for the Beijing Environmental Protection Bureau, said.

"This is the duty and responsibility of all polluting enterprises in Beijing," he told about 130 representatives from factories and enterprises at a meeting on Friday.

All sewage treatment facilities in the city should also reduce their emissions during the drill, he said.

Studies show that vehicle emissions and pollution from industrial enterprise, coal boilers and burners, and construction sites largely contribute to the air pollution in Beijing.

Despite the city's efforts to improve its air quality since 1998, progress has been thwarted due to the continual use of low sulfur coal in some factories and insufficient environment protection measures at constructions sites.

Li Wei, deputy secretary-general of the municipal government, said the tests would enhance monitoring of polluting enterprises.

Those who do not comply with the standards, will be exposed in the media and will be punished, Li said.

(China Daily August 11, 2007) 

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