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'Joint effort' urged to clear the air (2)

(China Daily)

08:20, January 30, 2013

He said Beijing, in particular, has huge energy-saving potential. Reducing indoor temperatures, even by a fraction, will make a huge difference.

"Everyone wants the temperature to be comfortable so they can wear shirts at home, but it is a huge waste of energy."

Zhou Rong, project manager on climate and energy studies at Greenpeace, an environmental NGO, argues that the main cause of air pollution lies elsewhere.

"I agree that people should not drive and then complain about the bad air, but the major problem is still in the structure of the economy and energy consumption, which cannot be changed by ordinary people," she said.

Zhou said raising public awareness to lead a low-carbon life may guarantee a promising future, but it won't solve matters now.

The hazy weather will soon go, according to Ma Xuekuan, chief weather forecaster of National Meteorological Center.

"Cold air will bring snow and rain to these areas from Thursday night, which will disperse the haze quickly," he said. "But until then, hazy weather will continue and even deteriorate in some places.''

Road transport was also affected on Monday, the third day of the 40-day peak travel season. A number of expressways were closed temporarily in eight provinces and municipalities, according to Ministry of Transport on Tuesday.

Sixty flights at Beijing Capital International Airport had been cancelled by Tuesday evening, including 14 international flights, as visibility was reduced to less than 200 meters.

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