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China to Work US on Emissions Regulation

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On: Mon, Dec 9, 2013 at 12:11PM | By: Karen Cook

China to Work US on Emissions Regulation

I suppose traffic jams are a problem in any civilized country, but more so in heavily populated areas, of course. All those people with some place to be causes the environment to gasp. The United States and Europe have long been attempting to lessen the damage caused by vehicle emissions. Recently China has begun to do its part to soften our global footprint and preserve what remains of our atmosphere for future generations.

China began this project back in the 1990s and is trying to match the standards already set in Europe. They are using a stair-step plan which implements gradually higher standards until they are in line with the rest of the world. They are currently at stage 4 which lowers the allowable sulfur content in car exhaust fumes from 350 parts per million to just 50. The next stage will reduce it to 10 and is predicted to be in place by 2017. These phases are monitored by China’s Ministry of Environmental Protection and the Standardization Administration of China.

According to the White House, China has asked for help in figuring out how to reach stage 6 of its program. The United States set its sulfur cap at 15 and Europe is set at 10 but China apparently wants to find a way to lower it further. The US has agreed to help and the research done will benefit both countries and the world at large. One US official told Reuters that this “is a clear signal that China wants to move forward in an accelerated way that will have far reaching impacts on air quality and public health.”

In 2012 China reached 120 million in passenger car ownership and is expected to exceed 200 million before the end of the decade. It is this boom which has caused the need for more stringent emissions standards.


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