BEIJING – Beijing achieved its air quality goal for 2017, reporting an average density of PM2.5 of 58 micrograms per cubic meter of air, authorities said on Wednesday.
The PM2.5 measurement records particulate matter, which are small and hazardous airborne particles.
The density dropped by 20.5 percent compared to levels in 2016; the Chinese capital experienced 226 good air days in 2017, 28 more than the previous year, while the number of days with heavy pollution decreased by 16 to 23, according to state news agency Xinhua.
“Among air pollution control efforts are demolition of coal-fired boilers, phasing out vehicles with high emission and upgrading of industrial structure,” said Li Xiang, of the Beijing Municipal Bureau of Environmental Protection.
Small boilers running on coal had almost been eradicated with heaters switching to gas or electricity, and most districts, including those within the city proper, had stopped using coal, Li added.
Moreover, since 2013, Beijing has closed six cement plants and has closed or upgraded nearly 2,000 companies in printing, casting, furniture manufacturing and other sectors, she added.
In 2013, the Chinese government ordered Beijing to reduce its PM2.5 density to around 60 micrograms per cubic meter of air by 2017 from the then average level of 90 micrograms.