Improving Chinese air pollution leads to business opportunities
China's trouble with smog and air pollution is well known, but air quality is beginning to improve as Chinese authorities start to tackle the problem. According to a story in Chemical & Engineering News (C&EN), the weekly newsmagazine of the American Chemical Society, their efforts have made China a major market for those in the business of abating and measuring air pollution.
Senior C&EN Hong Kong Correspondent Jean-François Tremblay reports that despite sustained economic growth over the past decade, levels of air pollutants such as sulfur dioxide, nitrogen oxide, ozone and particles are stable or in decline in China. The improvement is primarily due to better monitoring and more regulation by Chinese authorities. Chinese demand for electric cars is on the rise, and the coal plants that generate most of that electricity are being outfitted with the latest in pollution-fighting technology. Changes planned for the near future should also help: By 2023 most new cars in China will sport four-way catalytic converters, which scrub exhaust of particulate matter and harmful gases.
This push for pollution control has been a boon for suppliers of devices and technologies that can help industry meet regulatory standards. And given that China's air quality still has room for improvement —airborne particle concentrations in Beijing are at least seven times the World Health Organization recommendation—the demand for such technologies is expected to grow even more in the coming years.