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UN official lauds China’s efforts in curbing air pollution

Updated: May 22,2016 9:44 AM     Xinhua

NAIROBI — A UN Environment Programme (UNEP) official on May 21 lauded measures put in place by Chinese authorities in controlling air pollution.

UNEP Coordinator for Environment and Health Fanny Demassieux said the whole world is looking at the way Beijing is tackling the problem in order to borrow ideas on how to solve their air pollution in their countries.

“China has developed measures aimed at reducing the problem,” Demassieux told Xinhua ahead of the second session of the UN Environment Assembly (UNEA) slated for next week in Nairobi.

China, which has been battling air pollution for years, has issued new policy measures that could have big implications for its coal power sector.

The measures are expected to cut coal burning, limit car emissions and set yearly quotas for local governments and individual polluters. The country has also introduced bigger fines for those found to be in violation of air pollution standards.

Demassieux expects that the upcoming UNEA meeting that begins on May 23 will rally policy makers to make concrete decisions towards eradicating air pollution.

She said that the solution to air pollution lies in the integration of the problem in all sectors so that all can work as a team.

“The delegates, mainly policymakers, will have to agree to allocate money towards the eradicating communicable diseases that kill and maim majority of poor people,” she said.

“The citizens must also put up pressure to enable their policymakers allocate funds and also develop sound policy that is aimed at improving their lives,” she added.

Demassieux expects the delegates to come up with measures against fossil fuel, and step up efforts towards popularizing the development and adoption of renewal energy.