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Heavy smog to cloud North China during Lunar New Year holiday

Updated: Feb 14,2018 7:06 PM     Xinhua

BEIJING — Moderate to severe smog will blanket parts of North China during the upcoming Spring Festival holiday due to disappearing wind and rising humidity, the Ministry of Environmental Protection has said.

The affected areas include central and south of the Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei area, west of Shandong province and most of Henan province.

Smog will increase between Feb 15 to 17 before getting lighter on Feb 18 to 19. Pollution will ease from Feb 20 as wind arrives.

Pollution will hit Beijing from Feb 15 to 18. Severe pollution is expected on the evening of Feb 15 and will continue on Feb 16 due to the temporary lifting of the ban on fireworks.

Beijing and surrounding areas reported better air quality in the first month of 2018 as major air pollutants plummeted, the Ministry of Environmental Protection said in a statement on Feb 12.

In 13 cities in the Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei region, “good air” days accounted for 64.5 percent of the total last month on average, up by 28.3 percentage points from a year ago, the statement said. Beijing saw the biggest improvement as the proportion of days with blue skies reached 80.6 percent.