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Chinese government pledges to tackle pollution crisis

BMJ 2014; 348 doi: (Published 07 March 2014) Cite this as: BMJ 2014;348:g2004
  1. Jane Parry
  1. 1Hong Kong

China’s premier, Li Keqiang, has declared a “war on pollution,” saying that the country would tackle it with the same determination it has used to fight poverty in the past three decades.

Speaking at the annual meeting of the National People’s Congress, Premier Li said the priority was to reduce emissions of particulate matter with an aerodynamic diameter of less that 10 micrometres and less than 2.5 micrometres (PM10 and PM2.5, respectively), through measures such as the closure of 50 000 small coal fired furnaces and the decommissioning of six million old vehicles, the Xinhua news agency reported.

The announcement came a week after the country had experienced record levels of air pollution across wide swathes of the country. The Ministry of Environmental Protection’s satellite monitoring showed that on 22 February around 800 000 square kilometres of central and eastern China were under heavily polluted skies, …

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