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Philippine gov't strengthens air quality monitoring

(Xinhua)

09:42, March 29, 2012

MANILA, March 28 (Xinhua) -- The Philippine government has decided to further strengthen its air quality monitoring through the installation of additional monitoring stations, particularly in Metro Manila, a senior government official said on Wednesday.

Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) Secretary Ramon Paje said that his office is now focused monitoring not only on the total suspended particulates but also on smaller particulate matter in the air.

He said that seven more monitoring stations capable of gathering PM-10 (particles less than 10 micrometers in diameter) and PM-2 (particles less than 2.5 micrometers in diameter) will be constructed this year in Metro Manila.

The DENR has already set up in Metro Manila nine PM-10 monitoring stations, six of them manual and three automatic.

Citing the Environmental Management Bureau records, Paje said most stations showed readings that exceed the PM-10 annual guideline value of 60 microgram per normal cubic meter as provided for in the Philippine Clean Air Act.

Paje also stressed the need for more interventions to achieve healthy air quality.

These include the enhancement of anti-smoke belching operations in Metro Manila, the adoption of more stringent emission standards for all types of motor vehicles and stricter monitoring of private emission testing centers and motor vehicle inspection stations with the use of closed-circuit television or CCTV cameras, he said.

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