GUANGZHOU – Enterprises in Guangdong's provincial capital that fail to fulfill their environmental upgrade by October 20 will be ordered to either cut or completely shut down operations for the duration of the 16th Asian Games in November.
If the air quality turns substandard during the period, a three-level emergency plan will be introduced to limit the operation of major polluting enterprises, said Ding Hongdu, director of the city environmental protection bureau, at a press conference on the sidelines of the ongoing annual session of the city's people's congress on Tuesday.
Guangzhou will complete the "environmental renovation" of 28 industrial enterprises by the end of September, which will reduce the emission of nitrogen oxides by 59,000 tons annually, Ding said, adding that another 57 companies are being upgraded for clean energy.
A total of 92 manufacturing enterprises will move from the city center to make way for the service industry by the end of September.
A total of 553 gas stations, 19 oil depots and 466 oil tankers will upgrade for oil vapor recovery, decreasing oil vapor emission by 10,000 tons annually.
Control on volatile organic compound (VOC) is being exerted on 4,400 businesses in 11 sectors including petrochemical, coating and laundry, which is expected to reduce VOC by 13,000 tons annually.
Small coal-firing boilers in 232 enterprises will be removed and 150,000 substandard automobiles will be taken off the roads.
Complaints about air pollution from restaurants should reduce by 50 percent this year, compared with last year, Ding said.
Guangzhou will work with its neighboring cities to ensure the air quality for the Games.
The city has set a goal of having at least 350 days of sound air quality, compared with 347 days last year.
"I believe with the regional co-operation and strict implementation, we should be able to fulfill the goal,"Ding said.
Xian Weixiong, director of the city communication commission, said car use will be limited according to their license plates between June and November. A total of 1.4 million automobiles are registered in Guangzhou, and combined with those from outside the city and the military, the total is around 2 million, said Liu Jingjun, head of Guangzhou traffic police detachment.
Cars are increasing by 180,000 units every year in the city, Xian said.
About 78 percent of work to clean up the waterways in Guangzhou is over, with the rest to be wrapped up by the end of June, said Zhang Hu, director of city water authority.
As for the massive face lifting projects for the Games, which have raised tempers due to various inconveniences, Jian Wenhao, director of the city construction commission, said the projects will be completed by the end of September.
Liang Zhuohui contributed to the story.