Shanghai air and water pollution progress announced

Ke Jiayun
Local authorities released data about the city's air and water pollution treatment at a meeting organized by the Standing Committee of Shanghai People's Congress Friday.
Ke Jiayun

The concentration of airborne PM2.5 particles this year had been cut to 38 micrograms per cubic meter by Sunday last week, down 5 percent over the same period last year, the local environmental protection bureau said Friday morning.

The rate of "good" and "perfect" air quality days reached 79.6 percent, increasing by 7.8 percentage points over last year, the bureau said at a meeting organized by the Standing Committee of Shanghai People's Congress.

According to the Shanghai Environmental Protection Bureau, between January 2016 and August 2018, the city’s environmental protection system handled 9,642 environment-related cases, with fines reaching more than 1 billion yuan (US$146 million) in total.

Enterprises involved in 421 cases faced closure and seizure, and those in 52 cases were ordered to limit or stop manufacturing. Nearly 130 cases were transferred to local police for criminal liability.

In the past five years, local environmental protection authorities have received more than 60,000 complaints about air pollution, which accounted for nearly 60 percent of all complaints received.

The top two issues residents complained about were industrial waste gas — which made up 47.8 percent of complaints in connection with air pollution — and those related to restaurant waste gas, accounting for 27.7 percent.

Meanwhile, the Shanghai Water Authority announced that so far this year they have improved the environment along nearly 285 kilometers of rivers and creeks. More than 1,130 square meters of illegal structures were dismantled, with 27 enterprises being rectified.

Over 14 kilometers of sewage pipes have been built, with sewage interception pipes being placed at 77 sources of pollution. Sewage treatment facilities in some 91,000 households in the countryside have been renovated, as well as the sewage interception facilities in nine local rainwater pumping stations.

The Shanghai Maritime Safety Administration said it had checked 5,719 vessels for pollution prevention, finding flaws in 2,823 items. The vessels failed these tests were given fines totaling 4.35 million yuan and ordered to rectify the problems.

The local transportation authority said that starting October 1 this year, the use of low-sulfur oil will be expanded from vessels docked at local ports to all those sailing and docking in the emission control area.

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