Smoggy New Year

China Daily European Weekly - - China News - — ZHENG JINRAN

More than 13 cities in He­bei and He­nan prov­inces, in­clud­ing Shi­ji­azhuang and Zhengzhou, will wel­come Spring Fes­ti­val eve with smog, the na­tional en­vi­ron­ment min­istry said on Jan 23.

Start­ing Jan 23, vast re­gions in the prov­inces of He­bei and He­nan will see an in­crease in smog, which is fore­cast to per­sist and worsen un­til Fri­day, Spring Fes­ti­val eve, the Min­istry of En­vi­ron­men­tal Pro­tec­tion said. The smog is ex­pected to grad­u­ally dis­perse from north to south due to winds.

The Na­tional En­vi­ron­men­tal Mon­i­tor­ing Cen­ter also fore­cast se­vere smog for parts of He­bei, Shan­dong and He­nan prov­inces, though it said the fore­cast for the com­ing weekend might not be ac­cu­rate due to the chang­ing weather and emis­sions sit­u­a­tion.

Among the 13 cities, six were listed in the top-10 cities with se­vere air pol­lu­tion in 2016: Heng­shui, Shi­ji­azhuang, Baod­ing, Han­dan and Xing­tai of He­bei, and Zhengzhou of He­nan.

The min­istry has sent the fore­cast to the gov­ern­ments of th­ese ar­eas, sug­gest­ing they is­sue emer­gency alerts for air pol­lu­tion in ad­vance, and say­ing that vi­o­la­tors will be pun­ished se­verely. The min­istry said it will closely mon­i­tor ma­jor emis­sion sources such as large com­pa­nies via re­mote sens­ing and on­line mon­i­tor­ing tech­nolo­gies.

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