China Announces Ambitious Plan to Tackle its Atrocious Air

As China's hazardous environment becomes a "potent political issue", the central government has released a detailed plan that aims to clean up the country's abysmal air pollution.
September 18, 2013, 1pm PDT | Jonathan Nettler | @nettsj
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"The Chinese government announced an ambitious plan on Thursday to curb air pollution across the nation, including setting some limits on burning coal and taking high-polluting vehicles off the roads to ensure a drop in the concentration of particulate matter in cities," reports Edward Wong.

"The plan, released by the State Council, China’s cabinet, filled in a broad outline that the government had issued this year. It represents the most concrete response yet by the Communist Party and the government to growing criticism over allowing the country’s air, soil and water to degrade to abysmal levels because of corruption and unchecked economic growth."

China's air pollution, now among the worst in the world, has increased despite "strict environmental standards" already on the books and promises made by the government address the problem. Hence, "there was wide agreement that the ultimate test [of the new plan] would come in how it is carried out and enforced," writes Wong.  

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Published on Thursday, September 12, 2013 in The New York Times
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