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Beijing's Blue Skies Dusted Aside
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Although the skies were blue over Beijing for nine of the past 29 days, April was a dusty month for the city with the most serious air pollution in the past four years, said the municipal environmental protection bureau Saturday.


Sandstorms from Mongolia and North China's Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region brought floating dust into the city on seven occasions in April, said Pei Chenghu, deputy director of the bureau.


As of Saturday the urban areas of Beijing had seen 60 days of blue skies this year which is 16 less  than the same period last year.


The official said that on 17 days over the past four months the city had been exposed to level four or five air pollution. 


Pei said all the relevant departments in Beijing launched pollution prevention and control activities to improve the capital's air quality.


Beijing Construction Committee examined more than 9,000 building sites and ordered nearly 3,000 of them to take measures to control dust created by their work.  


At the same time the municipal government will use 13,700 tons of water to dampen down the floating dust in the streets.


Viewing the air quality records of the past few years no floating dust has occurred in May and the official said he hoped Beijing would have at least 20 days of blue sky during the month.  


(Xinhua News Agency April 30, 2006)

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