Shandong to make air-quality jargon easier for the public

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Environmental authorities in Shandong province are translating the technical jargon of pollutant measurement into more common terms, making it easier for the public to monitor government efforts to fight pollution.

Starting next year, "Blue sky, white clouds and shining stars" will be some of the index designations used to report air quality. 

Compared with the data about pollutant contents in the air such as sulfur dioxide, nitric oxide, the descriptive of "Blue sky, white clouds and shining stars" presents a clear image.

For instance, if visibility in Jinan, the provincial capital, is greater than 10 kilometers, the air quality can be reported as "Blue sky, white clouds and shining stars."

A program has been launched in the province to find out the relations between visibility and PM2.5, PM10, humidity as well as temperature. Experts believe these factors could help improve the standard.

PM2.5 information will be monitored and published next year in 17 cities of Shandong Province, including Jinan, Qingdao, Zibo.

PM2.5, air particulate with a diameter of 2.5 micrometers or less. PM2.5 particles can penetrate the lungs or even enter the blood stream.

Monitoring PM2.5 should encourage governments at all levels and enterprises to intensify their pollution control. It hopes by 2015 pollution readings will be 20 percent lower than those in 2010.

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