China launches hourly air quality data index

November 26, 2010
A power plant in Beijing. China has started publishing hourly air-quality information for major cities across the country as the world's top source of greenhouse gas emissions tries to rein in its notorious pollution.

China has started publishing hourly air-quality information for major cities across the country as the world's top source of greenhouse gas emissions tries to rein in its notorious pollution.

The levels of and nitrogen dioxide as well as particulate matter in 113 major cities will be updated every hour and published online under the new system launched Thursday by the China National Environmental Monitoring Centre.

The new system will "satisfy the people's right to know information about the environment," the centre was quoted by state media as saying.

It will "play a crucial role in air pollution prevention and control".

Beijing started publishing daily reports a decade ago using information from more than 2,000 air-quality monitoring stations across the vast country, the official Xinhua news agency said.

China -- which this week admitted it is the world's biggest greenhouse gas emitter -- has some of the world's worst air pollution after rapid growth over the past 30 years triggered widespread environmental damage.

The US embassy in Beijing already runs an hourly air quality index for the city that is published on social networking site and was set up as an alternative to official Chinese data widely criticised as downplaying pollution levels.

The embassy's index caused a stir on Twitter last week when it described levels in the capital as "crazy bad". The phrase was later deleted by the embassy.

Explore further: Bad air pervades in half of Chinese cities

Related Stories

Study says Chinese air quality standards not yet met

May 13, 2008

With the Olympic Games in sight, the Chinese Government is committed to improving the air quality in Beijing, and has had measures in place since 1998 which have already made a difference. However, there is still some way ...

China says air pollution worsening

July 27, 2010

China's air pollution increased this year for the first time since 2005, the environmental protection ministry has said, due to sandstorms, a rise in construction and industrial projects, and more cars.

Air pollution may increase risk of appendicitis

October 6, 2008

Could there be a link between high levels of air pollution and the risk of appendicitis? New research presented at the 73rd Annual Scientific Meeting of the American College of Gastroenterology in Orlando, suggests a novel ...

Thick Smog over Beijing, China

November 10, 2005

Thick pollution obscured the sky over Beijing and nearby regions on November 4, 2005. According to news reports, the city's pollution index reached the highest level on the scale between November 4-5, and residents were warned ...

Recommended for you

New study finds nature is vital to beating climate change

October 16, 2017

Better stewardship of the land could have a bigger role in fighting climate change than previously thought, according to the most comprehensive assessment to date of how greenhouse gas emissions can be reduced and stored ...

Waves in lakes make waves in the Earth

October 16, 2017

Beneath the peaceful rolling waves of a lake is a rumble, imperceptible to all but seismometers, that ripples into the earth like the waves ripple along the shore.

Is it gonna blow? Measuring volcanic emissions from space

October 13, 2017

Late last month, a stratovolcano in Bali named Mount Agung began to smoke. Little earthquakes trembled beneath the mountain. Officials have since evacuated thousands of people to prevent what happened when Agung erupted in ...

Tracing subglacial water storage

October 13, 2017

Glaciers are essential to both human and animal health. In fact, 70 percent of the world's population consumes water that has some glacial input. It's important to understand how these icy giants operate, because they impact ...

1 comment

Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

StarDust21
not rated yet Nov 28, 2010
And how reliable is that information they will give?

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.