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MEP releases five new emission standards

MEP worked with the AQSIQ and released five new emission standards, which is, Limits and measurement methods for exhaust pollutants from marine engines (CHINAⅠ, Ⅱ) (GB 15097-2016), Limits and measurement methods for emissions from motorcycles (CHINA Ⅳ) (GB 14622-2016), Limits and measurement methods for emissions of pollutants from mopeds (CHINA Ⅳ) (GB 18176-2016), Technical requirements and measurement methods for emissions from light-duty hybrid electric vehicles (GB 19755-2016), and Emission standard of pollutants for caustic alkali and polyvinyl chloride industry (GB 15581-2016), in an effort to implement the Action Plan for Prevention and Control of Air Pollution and the Action Plan for Prevention and Control of Water Pollution released by the State Council, also, to promote industrial transformation and upgrading by reversed transmission of the pressure through preparing and amending the emission standards for key industries.

The implementation of the five standards may substantially cut the pollution by PM, NOx, and SO2 and effectively promote the advancement of industrial technologies and the improvement of environmental quality, said Zou Shoumin, Director General of the Ministry’s Department of Science, Technology and Standards.

China is a country with fairly abundant inland shipping resources, and the shipping services have brought about increasingly pressing environmental pollution problems, especially in port cities and riverside cities. In light of the urgent situation for controlling air pollution in ports and by vessels, MEP has developed the limits and measurement methods for exhaust pollutants from marine engines, in order to tighten the control of such pollutants and fill in the gap in emission standards of air pollutants from vessels.

The new standard shall apply to the environmental management of the new marine engines (equipped with rated net power above 37 kW) of the vessels (e.g., inland vessel, coaster vessel, river-sea ship, channel ship, and all kinds of fishing ships) that are registered in China and navigate or operate in Chinese territorial waters, but not ocean-going vessels which shall apply relevant regulations of international conventions. The standard also stipulates the requirements for the fuels used by the vessels and the emission specifications of the vessels and marine engines after rebuilding. The new standard will notably lower the exhaust emissions of marine engines. Calculated by an increment in the combined capacity of marine engines by 10 mil. kW/year and a life expectancy of 25 years for each engine, in three years since China Ⅰ standard takes effect, the marine engines that have been manufactured and put in use are expected to reduce NOx emissions by around 1.4 mil. t and PM emissions about 400,000 t in their life cycles. In three years since China Ⅱ standard takes effect, the vessels equipped with those engines will cut an additional NOx emission by around 1.15 mil. t and PM emissions by around 60,000 t. The pollution reduction effects will be more significant if all of the inland vessels, coaster vessels, and fishing ships would meet the fuel requirements specified by this standard.

Also, the outputs of the motorcycle manufacturing industry skyrocketed in China, and by the end of 2015, the motorcycle population had reached 95.14 mil., said Zou. It is estimated that motorcycles contributed 12.7 percent of CO, 13.5 percent of HC, and 1.6 percent of NOx emissions from vehicles throughout the country in 2015. China is a major producer and user of motorcycles, and yet, the overall technical level of motorcycles still has a big gap with the international advanced level. Therefore, the Ministry has developed the Limits and measurement methods for emissions from motorcycles (CHINA Ⅳ) (GB 14622-2016) and the Limits and measurement methods for emissions of pollutants from mopeds (CHINA Ⅳ) (GB 18176-2016), in an effort to effectively control emissions from motorcycles and promote the technological advancement and structural optimization of relevant industries.

The amendments to the ongoing China Ⅲ standard are fivefold. First, the scope of application is extended to cover the diesel-fueled, three-wheel motorcycles. Second, there is a new pollutant indicator. There are new specifications for control of the PM emissions by diesel-fueled, three-wheel motorcycles. Third, the limits to the pollutants are more strict. Fourth, the durability requirements for emission control are tougher. Fifth, more complete environmental management and technical specifications are set out.

All of the newly sold and registered motorcycles and mopeds shall meet the new standard since July 1, 2019, said Zou. It is estimated that in three years since China Ⅳ standard takes effect, all of the new motorcycles will emit around 6.5 mil. t less CO, about 2 mil. t less HC, and about 300,000 t less NOx in their life cycles, compared with the business-as-usual scenario.

China has for years given incentives for the development of energy-efficient and new energy automobiles including hybrid electric vehicles, and with increasingly improving and maturing technologies, China has seen skyrocketing output and sales of hybrid electric cars since 2014, according to Zou. Also, with increasingly tougher oil consumption and emission standards, the outputs and sales of such vehicles will keep growing. The measurement methods for emissions from conventional automobiles cannot be applied to accurately estimate the emissions of hybrid electric cars because they have auxiliary electric power sources. So specific measurement methods need to be put in place.

The new standard is the amendment to the Measurement methods for emissions from light-duty hybrid electric vehicles (GB/T19755-2005), and it specifies the technical specifications and measurement methods for emissions from light-duty hybrid electric vehicles. The specific pollutant indicators and limits shall apply the Limits and measurement methods for emissions from light-duty vehicles (Ⅲ, Ⅳ) (GB 18352.3-2005) or the Limits and measurement methods for emissions from light-duty vehicles (Ⅴ) (GB 18352.5-2013) accordingly. GB/T19755-2005 applies only to the light-duty electric vehicles that meet Stage Ⅱ standard, while the new standard applies to such vehicles that meet Stage Ⅳ and Ⅴ standards. The implementation of the new measurement methods does not imply any extra cost from technical upgrading of vehicles.

Moreover, Zou says, the caustic alkali and polyvinyl chloride businesses have been in constant growth in recent years and China has become the world’s largest producer of caustic alkali and polyvinyl chloride. However, the two industries discharge not only conventional pollutants but also toxic and harmful pollutants such as heavy metals, which harm the public health and environmental security. Besides, the polyvinyl chloride industry is one of the mercury-related industries regulated by Minamata Convention on Mercury, and it uses about 850 t mercury each year, accounting for 85 percent of the national consumption of mercury and 51 percent of the global consumption.

In preparation of this new standard, we have considered such factors as how the two industries in China are carrying out productions and controlling pollution, how advanced are their production processes and pollution control technologies, and how much does it cost for attainment of discharge standards. We’ve added provisions for emission control of air pollutants, adjusted the list of water pollutants to be regulated, set tougher requirements for control of water pollutants, and deleted the provisions for tiered management of wastewater based on the water flow. After the new standard takes effect, the discharge of CODCr, BOD5, total mercury, and vinyl chloride in wastewater will be cut by 77 percent, 67 percent, 67 percent, and 87 percent respectively from the business-as-usual scenario, and the emissions of PM, vinyl chloride, and NMHC in waste gas will be down by 51 percent, 72 percent, and 58 percent respectively.

Appendix 1: Interpretations on Limits and measurement methods for exhaust pollutants from marine engines (CHINAⅠ, Ⅱ) (GB 15097-2016)

Appendix 2: Interpretations on Limits and measurement methods for emissions from motorcycles (CHINA Ⅳ) (GB 14622-2016) and Limits and measurement methods for emissions of pollutants from mopeds (CHINA Ⅳ) (GB 18176-2016)

Appendix 3: Interpretations on Technical requirements and measurement methods for emissions from light-duty hybrid electric vehicles (GB 19755-2016)

Appendix 4: Interpretations on Emission standard of pollutants for caustic alkali and polyvinyl chloride industry (GB 15581-2016)

(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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