Nine in 10 big Chinese cities failed to meet air quality standards in 2014 but the number was an improvement on 2013 as the war on pollution began to show results.
Only eight of 74 cities monitored by the government met national standards in 2014 on a series of pollution indices such as PM2.5, which measures particles found in the air, carbon monoxide and ozone, China Daily reported Tuesday, citing the Ministry of Environmental Protection.
Last year, China declared war on pollution, eliminating substandard industrial capacity and slashing coal consumption.
In 2013, only three cities — Haikou on the island province of Hainan, Lhasa in Tibet autonomous region and the coastal resort city of Zhoushan — met the standards.
They were joined in 2014 by Shenzhen, Huizhou and Zhuhai in southern Guangdong province, Fuzhou in neighbouring Fujian and Kunming in the southwest.
Beijing is not among the 10 Chinese cities with the worst air quality nor among the 10 Chinese cities with the best air quality.
Of the 10 worst-performing cities in 2014, seven are in the heavy industrial province of Hebei, which surrounds Beijing, the ministry said.
The average PM2.5 reading in the Beijing-Hebei-Tianjin region was 93 micrograms per cubic meter last year, the ministry said.
The state standard is 35 micrograms but China does not expect to bring the national average down to that level before 2030.
Cities with best air quality
1. Haikou, capital of south China’s Hainan province
2. Zhoushan, east China’s Zhejiang province
3. Lhasa, capital of southwest China’s Tibet autonomous region
4, Shenzhen, south China’s Guangdong province
5. Zhuhai, south China’s Guangdong province
6. Huizhou, south China’s Guangdong province
7. Fuzhou, capital east China’s Fujian province
8. Xiamen, east China’s Fujian province
9. Kunming, capital of southwest China’s Yunnan province
10. Zhongshan, south China’s Guangdong province
Cities with worst air quality
1. Baoding, north China’s Hebei province
2. Xingtai, north China’s Hebei province
3. Shijiazhuang, north China’s Hebei province
4. Tangshan, north China’s Hebei province
5. Handan, north China’s Hebei province
6. Hengshui, North China’s Hebei province
7. Jinan, east China’s Shandong province
8. Langfang, north China’s Hebei province
9. Zhengzhou, north China’s Henan province
10. Tianjin, north China
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