The lead emission has been reduced by 1,500 tons each year since China prohibited the use of leaded gasoline in July 2000, says a white paper titled "Environmental Protection in China (1996-2005)".
"In recent years, the vehicle emission standards have proceeded from Phase I to Phase II, and Phase III standards have been drawn up," says the white paper, which is released by the Information Office of the State Council.
Some cities have started a clean vehicle campaign, actively promoting the use of low-pollution vehicles fueled by natural gas and liquefied petroleum gas.
According to the white paper, the quantitative examination system for comprehensive urban environmental control has been introduced in over 500 Chinese cities.
The system gives quantitative standards for the quality of the urban environment, pollution control and construction of urban environmental infrastructure, and thus will help to comprehensively assess the environmental protection work of city governments, the paper says.
At present, more than 100 cities (districts) are building themselves into environment-protection model cities, among which 56 cities and five districts in municipalities directly under the central government have succeeded in meeting the required standards.
"These model cities enjoy 80 percent of the total number of days a year with air quality reaching or above Grade II," it says.