China’s clean air challenge: The health impacts of transport emissions (Su Song, The City Fix, Nov. 20, 2014)
Also discussed here: In Step to Lower Carbon Emissions, China Will Place a Limit on Coal Use in 2020 (Edward Wong, New York Times, Nov. 20, 2014)
Today we review plans by the Chinese government to both monitor and reduce the extremely high levels of air pollution found in its largest cities, a large portion of which is due to vehicle emissions. Plans have been approved to achieve particulate emissions by as much as 25% by 2017 by monitoring emissions and using technology to regulate them and by managing transport demand using congestion pricing and other economic tools. Equally impressive plans are in place to cap carbon emissions from coal by 2020. Credit must be given to governments that recognize the impact of unrestricted deterioration of urban air quality on health and then proceed to establish short and longer term targets to improve this. When will Canadian and American governments (and City Councils) do likewise for their cities or do we wait until conditions get as bad as in China?
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