Beijing EPA Declares “War” On Pollution

War on pollution

Oh, great. Another unwinnable war.

Beijing’s Environmental Protection Agency is serious about efforts to curb pollution this time, like, really serious. Cower in fear, Pollution, you will soon be driven hence. Beijing will hear the lamentation of your women.

“It’s a declaration of war against PM2.5,” Beijing’s Environmental Protection Bureau said in a statement on its website, referring to tiny particles in the air that pose the greatest risk to human health.

That’s from Shanghai Daily (via “Agencies”), which explains that the city has basically done everything it can wants to — shutting factories, building more subway lines — without seeing improvement. Huh. I wonder fucking why.

So what big weapons in this new War Against Pollution will the authorities have at their disposal?

In the newly unveiled measures, Beijing will place tougher restrictions on the number of new vehicles allowed on the roads each year, curbing annual growth to nearly zero.

The government aims to cap the number of vehicles in the city at 6 million by the end of 2017, compared with 5.35 million by the end of July, according to the Xinhua news agency.

Who am I? YOUR WORST NIGHTMARE, pollution. I… wait a minute. Isn’t 6 million greater than 5.35 million?

Beijing also aims to reduce total vehicle fuel consumption by at least 5 percent from 2012, by promoting the sale of new energy and small vehicles, and encouraging people to drive less frequently.

So this war involves politely asking people to buy a type of cars no one wants, instead of Audis?

The city government will also restrict the number of vehicles allowed in specific areas during certain times of the day, starting next year, it added.

“In order to curb vehicle emissions, we have to introduce a market mechanism to reduce intensity of vehicle use,” Xinhua quoted city environmental official Li Kunsheng as saying.

But at least government agencies are going to tell auto makers, in no uncertain terms — martial, you might say — to get in line with these new policies, even if that means taking a revenue hit, lest they want to pack up and GTFO.

Carmakers including Volkswagen AG, General Motors Co, Toyota Motor Corp and Ford Motor Co have all said they are shifting their attention to China’s lower-tier cities, as sales growth in major cities such as Beijing and Shanghai starts to stagnate.

Oh, I see. They’re just moving to the inner provinces, where pesky journalists and foreigners and influential microbloggers don’t live.

But there is a second front to this war, of course: the factories. Like with a cruise missile, they’re being told…

Other measures to be introduced to clean up Beijing’s air include ordering 1,200 polluting companies to upgrade or close some or all their facilities in the years to 2016.

Fuck it. The terrorists have already won.

    3 Responses to “Beijing EPA Declares “War” On Pollution”

    1. Chinese Netizen

      Why not start with a mere congestion tax like London? Too egalitarian? Probably every single car on Beijing roads would be white plated PLA/PAP plates then.

    2. hackin' 'n wheezin'

      does anyone have any idea what the contribution of burning garbage is to the pollution in beijing?

      i have heard scuttlebutt that trash was a big cause that wasn’t receiving the attention it deserved, but maybe those are just ghastly rumors that will end up getting someone locked up (or at least banned from weibo). i don’t necessarily mean the little roadside trash pits (though those can be pretty nasty and i have seen them in the suburbs), but rather something on a larger scale.

    3. mike

      Nice diagram. Can we start with banning old granddads from smoking ‘double happiness’ with their grandchildren? Then we can get on to more impossible goals like, ‘attacking the automobile industry’.


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