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Beijing, neighboring areas jointly ensure air quality for Olympics
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19:44, February 22, 2008

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Olympic host Beijing and its surrounding regions have pledged to make concerted efforts to ensure the air quality in the capital during the event.

Tianjin, Hebei, Inner Mongolia, Shanxi, Shandong and Beijing will jointly take pollution treatment measures to control dust, vehicle exhaust and industrial pollution emissions, according to a plan aimed at ensuring the air quality for the August 8-24 Games.

"During the Games, Beijing will limit the number of vehicles on roads, stop polluting work at construction sites and impose pollutant reductions on key companies," said Du Shaozhong, deputy director of the Beijing Environmental Protection Bureau.

The neighboring areas will also take temporary measures to control pollution, he said.

A latest 2008 "Blue Sky" plan released by the Tianjin Environmental Protection Bureau, said the municipality will take compulsory pollution control measures for the Olympic Games. Tianjin will host some of the Games' football tournament.

The plan has marked Tianjin's Wuqing, Baodi, Jixian and Beichen areas bordering Beijing as key pollution control areas.

The areas within 1.5 kilometers from the Olympic venues in Tianjin will ban construction during tournament. Coal-burning facilities in the marked areas will suspend operation or run on a low level.

The six regions have already achieved some progress in pollution treatment as required in the plan, the official said.

By the end of last year, 75 percent of the required coal-fired power plants in the six areas have installed and commissioned facilities to clear sulphur dioxide in smoke.

Beijing, Tianjin and Hebei have shut down a number of highly polluting and energy consuming cement, coking and steel plants.

Source: Xinhua

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