The density of fine particulate matter (PM2.5) in Beijing decreased by 10.1 percent year on year in the first nine months of 2016, the local environment watchdog said on October 18.
The average PM2.5 reading in the period was 62 micrograms per cubic meter, the city’s environmental protection bureau said. In 2015, the level was 80.6 micrograms, down from 95.7 micrograms in 2012.
Air quality was rated excellent or good for 155 days, 17 days more than during the same period last year. Heavy air pollution occurred on 15 days, four fewer days than in the January-September period last year.
Meanwhile, the densities of PM10, sulfur dioxide and nitrogen dioxide dropped 14.9 percent, 28.6 percent and 6.7 percent, respectively.
Over the past three quarters, Beijing completed improvements on coal-fired boilers, eliminated 306,000 aging automobiles and phased out 224 polluting factories.