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Position:CAAC News»City Air Quality Attainment Plan Training Convened for Implementing Provisions of Air Law, Proceeding the Implementation of the Attainment Plan

City Air Quality Attainment Plan Training Convened for Implementing Provisions of Air Law, Proceeding the Implementation of the Attainment PlanPost date: 2017-07-07

On July 5th, a training session on urban air quality attainment plan management was opened at Chengdu, Sichuan. Domestic and foreign experts and scholars were invited to discuss several issues, including how to implement the provisions of air law; support the implementation of air law and urban air quality attainment plan;and to put the relative measures into practice. The representatives from different local environmental departments were invited to share their difficulties and experience of the work-in-process of air quality attainment plan.

On August 29th, 2015, the newly revised Air Pollution Prevention Law of People's Republic of China was published. The law’s Article 11 specifies that if a local government fails to meet the national air quality standard then it should make a time-limited air quality attainment plan and take stricter measures, according to the State Council or the environmental protection authority’s prescribed deadline, to reach the air quality standard.  

In January, 2016, the new air law was officially implemented. China has started a new chapter on air quality attainment management. In fact, as the core mechanism of improving air quality, the air quality attainment management plan has been successfully put into practice in the U.S. and the U.K. for many years.

‘Since the 1970s, the United States has had a developed mechanism for attainment plan,’said Dale Evarts from the office of Air Quality Attainment sat the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, ‘the State Implementation Plan(SIP) is one of the typical models in air quality attainment management and it has also made important contributions to the improvement of air quality in U.S.A.’

To date, many cities have carried out work on air quality attainment management.

‘In 2013, Shenzhen started a study of air quality attainment plan,’said Yan Min, the director of the Institute of Atmosphere Research at Shenzhen Environmental Science Academy, ’Shenzhen has not only met all the standards in air quality since 2015, but has also set the goal for next stage, aiming to cut down the PM2.5 level to 25ug/m3 in 2020.’

Air quality attainment management is not simply making plans, but also to propose environmental protection in an administrative way. A complete attainment management pattern should identify the local government as the responsible subject and air quality attainment as the goal; apply scientific measures to urban air quality management; and design and evaluate air quality improvement measures to develop a sustained attainment management pattern. Air quality attainment management is a significant limitation in air quality management because it presents the previous requirements on urban energy, transportation and industrious development and hence does not achieve continuous improvement of air quality.

‘When revising the air law, we prepared a suggestions report and conducted many seminars to promote the attaionment mechanism demonstrated in the new laws. As of now, we have compiled the Manual of Air Quality Attainment Plan to give support in implementing air law in cities,’ introduced Xie Hongxing, the director of Innovation Center for Clean-Air Solutions(ICCS), ‘we hope that this manual can help local cities accelerate the establishment of the attainment plan system and fasten the pace to reestablish blue skies.’

‘The air quality attainment plan manual is essential and will be very helpful for more than 300 cities across the country, especially in its presentation as eight steps and a general sketch for the compliance planning work,’said Professor Xiao for Tsinghua University. The director of the China–US program of The Regulatory Assistance Project, Chris James, said, ‘when making attainment planning, we should also think of the coordinate measures to reduce the carbon emission, which shares a similar pattern for other clean energy.’

ICCS’s ‘Air quality Attainment Plan Manual’ and its supporting tools has been conducted experimentally in Shanxi, Shenzhen and Changzhou, etc.

‘Volatile organic compounds(VOCs) are the precursors of ozone and PM2.5 and are the difficulty in air quality attainment planning,’ said the representative of Changzhou, ‘we hope, with the work of attainment planning, to reduce VOCs emission and sequentially other pollutants.’

‘Unlike other places, Shanxi are still facing an SO2 pollution problem. In the process of attainment planning, we should pay more attention to this, especially in the warm period,’ said the representative from Shanxi province.

Furthermore, the representative of Sichuan Environmental Science Academy initiated the experience in air quality attainment management in Yibin. The programme officer for Local Governments for Sustainability (ICLEI) shared their experience in attainment planning in East Asian cities as well.

This meeting is a sub-forum of the 2017 International Conference on Air Benefit,and Cost and Attainment Assessment(ABaCAS).The ABaCAS conference for this year is supported by the Ministry of Environmental Protection, Environmental Protection Agency and U.S. Energy Foundation, co-hosted by Tsinghua University, South China University of Technology, Zhejiang University and University of Tennessee. ABaCAS is co-organized by Sichuan Academy of Environmental Sciences, Environmental Scientific Society of Sichuan Province, State Key Joint Laboratory of Environment Simulation and Pollution Control, Sichuan Environmental Protection Key Laboratory of Mobile Source Pollution Control and Sichuan Environmental Protection Key Laboratory of Combined Pollution and Prevention Control.