400,000 polluting cars to go off Beijing roads

April 20th, 2011 - 3:30 pm ICT by IANS  

Beijing, April 20 (IANS) The government plans to remove by 2015 as many as 400,000 polluting cars from the roads of Beijing, a city that already has nearly 5 million cars.

Officials will target vehicles that spew thick fumes as part of an ambitious plan to boost the number of “blue-sky days”, China Daily reported.

Beijing has almost 5 million cars and to ease congestion, a license plate system was introduced in April 2009 that bans cars for one day a week.

Zang Yuanwei, deputy director of the environmental protection bureau’s vehicle emissions management division, said the project to remove cars will be carried out systematically and 50,000 “dirty” vehicles will be removed by the end of this year.

Zang, however, skirted a query on whether subsidies will be used to encourage owners to give up their cars.

Two years back, 106,000 high-polluting vehicles were removed by offering cash incentives.

“The measures to limit new cars and optimise the car population are feasible to controlling pollutants,” Zang was quoted as saying.

The official added that long-term regulations will be released in the coming months to ensure stricter monitoring.

He Kebin, a professor, said: “The emissions from just one heavily polluting car roughly equates to 20 conventional cars.”

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