- During the first month of the year, pollution in Beijing has reached and surpassed the world established levels causing authorities to ask residents not to be out on the streets.
- Hospital visits for respiratory problems have increased 20 percent during this last contamination period.
- Additionally, authorities have ordered that 30 percent of government work vehicles to stop operating and the shutting down of 106 high pollution factories.
- Beijing also announced new measures to control the pollution, such as the cessation of use of 180,000 obsolete vehicles, with a target of a 2 percent reduction of emissions. Photo: AFP
- Last month, Beijing registered historic levels of pollution, in particular on January 12 when the concentration of PM2.5 particles reached 993 micrograms per cubic meter of air.
- The World Health Organization considers 25 micrograms per cubic meter of air to be the limit for a sustainable environment.
- The situation led Beijing's population to express their indignation on social media and even official media have asked for "concrete actions" from the city leaders.
- Others have asked for more drastic measures, like the prohibition of vehicle use on days of high contamination levels. Photo: AFP
- At the same tiime, they support the creation of stricter restrictions for combustible emissions. Photo: AFP
- The "China Daily Newspaper" has asked for the government to reveal details of the cause of the high contamination if "it really wants to solve the problem."
- New Mayor Wang Anshun, installed on Monday, has promised to make dealing with the precarious environmental situation his top priority this session. Photo: AFP
- The constant pollution is a result of the burning of carbon in nearby electrical power stations and carbon dioxide emissions from cars in the capital.
- China's Vice Premier Li Keqiang, who is likely to become the head of state in March, said that solving the contamination issue would take a long time. Photo: AFP
During the first month of the year, pollution in Beijing has reached and surpassed the world established levels causing authorities to ask residents not to be out on the streets.