Greener Beijing, there is some hope

The number of cars is increasing in China. Figures published in July 2016: In China the total number of cars now 184 million, with 135 million private cars. Driving license total 296 million. Beijing: 5.44 million cars.

Rumors go around of more traffic restrictions in Beijing as well as road fees to enter the center of the city (“congestion fees”). Another much more controversial plan – being carried out – is to simply lower the city population by making life difficult and expensive for migrants. In my opinion, unsustainable as it is chasing away all the people providing services.

China Daily on 3 September 2016 published the following data on Beijing, see:


Some of the figures:
– 2015 population 21.71 million
– 2015 registered vehicles: 5.62 million (notice, as usual, the difference with the figure above!)
– metro lines: 2015 554 Km – 2020 1,000 Km
– evolution of PM2.5 and “good air days”

In July China Daily also published the sources of PM2.5 in Beijing, Tianjin and Hebei:


That is in line with my assessment that pollution in Beijing is roughly: one third cars / one third local industry / one third coming from the outside.
Coordination between areas has grown into a major issue in the fight against air pollution, especially in the Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei region.
Beijing has set an air pollution reduction target for PM2.5 at 60 micrograms per cubic meter by 2017. The city averaged 80.9 micrograms in 2015, suggesting the target will be hard to reach.
See the full article here:
12 July 2016 – Lots of bad air blows in from elsewhere
China Daily article

Beijing now has 68,000 public bicycles, and some new models. The city has also launched an app to provide real-time location data, nearby rental stations, number of available bikes etc. The rental bikes were launched in 2012 and I see more and more on the road.

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