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MEP releases air quality status of key regions and 74 cities in 2014
2015-02-02
Article type: Translated
An official with MEP informed on the media recently the air quality status of key regions and 74 cities across 2014, including cities seated in Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei region, Yangtze River delta, Pearl River delta, as well as municipalities directly under the Central Government, provincial capital cities, and cities separately listed in State plans. 
According to the official, evaluated by "Ambient Air Quality Standard", eight (Haikou, Lhasa, Zhoushan, Shenzhen, Zhuhai, Fuzhou, Huizhou, and Kunming) out of the above said 74 cities attained air quality standard in respect of the mean annual reading of six pollutants including fine particulate matters (PM2.5), inhalable particulate matters (PM10), nitrogen dioxide (NO2), carbon monoxide (CO), and ozone (O3), while the remaining 66 cities did not, to some degree. The top 10 cities recorded with fairly good air quality were Haikou, Zhoushan, Lhasa, Shenzhen, Zhuhai, Huizhou, Fuzhou, Xiamen, Kunming, and Zhongshan; the top 10 cities recorded with fairly poor air quality were Baoding, Xingtai, Shijiazhuang, Tangshan, Handan, Hengshui, Jinan, Langfang, Zhengzhou, and Tianjin. 
The number of attainment days averaged out at 156 in the 13 cities at or above prefectural level in Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei region, 85 days less than the average of 74 cities. The percentage of attainment days ranged between 21.9% and 86.4%, and averaged out at 42.8%, up 5.3 percentage points from last year. The nonattainment days with records of heavy pollution or severe pollution accounted for 17.0%, which is 11.4 percentage points over the average of 74 cities, and down 3.7 percentage points from last year. The highest percentage of nonattainment days was caused with PM2.5 as the leading pollutant, followed by days caused with PM10 as the leading pollutant, and then days caused with O3 as the leading pollutant. The mean annual reading of PM2.5 was 93 ?g/m3 in Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei region, with 12 nonattainment cities; of PM10 158 ?g/m3, with 13 nonattainment cities; of SO2 52 ?g/m3, with 4 nonattainment cities; and of NO2 49 ?g/m3, with 10 nonattainment cities. The 95th percentile value of the mean daily reading of CO was 3.5 mg/m3, making it three nonattainment cities. The 90th percentile value of the 8-hour maximum daily reading of O3 registered 162 ?g/m3, making it eight nonattainment cities. The percentage of attainment days was 47.1% in Beijing, down 1.1 percentage points from a year earlier. Among others, the mean annual PM2.5 reading was 85.9 ?g/m3, down 4.0% from last year. 
The number of attainment days averaged out at 254 in the 25 cities at or above prefectural level in Yangtze River delta, 13 days more than the average of 74 cities. The percentage of attainment days ranged between 51.6%94.0%, and averaged out at 69.5%, up 5.3 percentage points from last year. The nonattainment days with records of heavy pollution or severe pollution accounted for 2.9%, which is 2.7 percentage points lower than the average of 74 cities, and down 3.0 percentage points from last year. The highest percentage of nonattainment days was caused with PM2.5 as the leading pollutant, followed by days caused with O3 as the leading pollutant, and then days caused with PM10 as the leading pollutant. The mean annual reading of PM2.5 was 60 ?g/m3 in Yangtze River delta, with 24 nonattainment cities; of PM10 92 ?g/m3, with 22 nonattainment cities; of SO2 25 ?g/m3, and all of the 25 cities attained relevant standard; and of NO2 39 ?g/m3, with 11 nonattainment cities. The 95th percentile value of the mean daily reading of CO was 1.5 mg/m3, all of the 25 cities attained standard. The 90th percentile value of the 8-hour maximum daily reading of O3 registered 154 ?g/m3, making it 10 nonattainment cities. 
The number of attainment days averaged out at 298 in the 9 cities at or above prefectural level in Pearl River delta, 57 days more than the average of 74 cities. The percentage of attainment days ranged between 70.2%95.6%, and averaged out at 81.6%, up 5.3 percentage points from last year. The nonattainment days with records of heavy pollution accounted for 0.4%, which is 5.2 percentage points lower than the average of 74 cities in terms of records of heavy pollution or severe pollution. The highest percentage of nonattainment days was caused with O3 as the leading pollutant, followed by days caused with PM2.5 as the leading pollutant, and then days caused with NO2 as the leading pollutant. The mean annual reading of PM2.5 was 42 ?g/m3 in Pearl River delta, with 6 nonattainment cities; of PM10 61 ?g/m3, with 1 nonattainment cities; of SO2 18 ?g/m3, and all of the 9 cities attained relevant standard; and of NO2 37 ?g/m3, with 3 nonattainment cities. The 95th percentile value of the mean daily reading of CO was 1.5 mg/m3, all of the 9 cities attained standard. The 90th percentile value of the 8-hour maximum daily reading of O3 registered 156 ?g/m3, making it 4 nonattainment cities. 
Over the passing year since the "Action Plan for Prevention and Control of Atmospheric Pollution" was implemented, preliminary progress has been made in tackling atmospheric pollution with the concerted efforts of government departments at all levels, with the overall ambient air quality in the 74 cities improved from a year earlier. The improvements can be demonstrated as below; firstly, the percentage of attainment cities and the number of attainment days went up. The number of attainment days averaged out at 241 among the 74 key cities. The percentage of attainment days went up to 66.0% from 60.5% a year before, and the number of attainment cities went up to 8 from 3. Secondly, the concentration of main pollutants dropped. The concentration of main pollutants dropped to varied degrees against 2013 levels in 74 cities. Thirdly, the heavy pollution weather events occurred less frequently with weaker pollution. Compared with last year, the percentage of days with records of heavy pollution or severe pollution dropped to 5.6% from 8.6%, down 3.0 percentage points. 
The atmospheric pollution was still in a grave situation and could be reflected by the following respects, said the official: a.) the three key regions remained the places with heavier air pollution. Eleven out of the 13 cities at or above prefectural level in Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei region were among the top 20 most polluted Chinese cities, and eight out of them were among the top 10. The mean annual reading of PM2.5 in the region was more than 2.6 times of the standard. b.) the compound air pollution was very distinctive. The conventional air pollution caused by soot and vehicle exhausts was aggravated by secondary pollution. In some cities, not only PM2.5 and PM10 readings were above limits, O3 pollution was an increasingly pressing problem as well. c.) heavy pollution weather events have not been under control. This year, two heavy pollution weather events which lasted for a long spell and caused bad pollution struck the country, one in February and the other in October. The trend of frequent heavy pollution weather events was not substantially contained. 
MEP would earnestly wrap up the experience in atmospheric pollution control over the passing year, thoroughly implement the "Action Plan for Prevention and Control of Atmospheric Pollution", give full play to the leading and guiding role of air quality monitoring data, strengthen the quality management of monitoring data, do a good job in the air quality ranking and information sharing, step up the forecast and early warning, and advance the continuous improvement of ambient air quality, according to the source. 
 
 

 

 

(This English version is for your reference only.In case any discrepancy exists between the Chinese and English context, the Chinese version shall prevail.)
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