Tourists visit the Palace Museum in Beijing on a clear day. (AFP)
BEIJING - The State Council, China's cabinet, on Wednesday demanded more air pollution control efforts in pursuit of continuous air quality improvement.
The "main battlefields" include the Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei region and neighboring areas, and the Yangtze River Delta region, the State Council statement read
Building on the air quality improvement in past few years, the country should "further markedly reduce the density of fine particulate matter and the number of days of heavy air pollution within three years," according to a statement released after a State Council executive meeting presided over by Premier Li Keqiang.
The "main battlefields" of "the war to defend the blue skies" include the Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei region and neighboring areas, and the Yangtze River Delta region, the statement read.
Efforts should be made to prevent and control air pollution from the sources. In the main regions, no new production capacity for steel, coking, and electrolytic aluminum will be allowed. Targets for eliminating overcapacity will be raised in these regions.
The country will raise the share of railway cargo transportation and encourage the elimination of inland river vessels that have been in use for more than 20 years, the statement said.
Gasoline and diesel meeting stricter pollutant standards will be supplied all around the country starting in Jan 1, 2019.
China will continue to put a cap to the total amount of coal consumption in the key areas for air pollution control, and eliminate coal-burning power-generation units that don't meet standards as well as small boilers in a firm and orderly manner.
The government will also reinforce environmental law enforcement and supervision, and get everyone involved to protect the blue skies, the statement read.