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Heavily Polluted City Improves Environment

Efforts to improve a badly damaged environment have paid off in Benxi, a city in northeast China’s Liaoning Province.

Once called the only city that cannot be spotted by satellite due to its heavy air pollution, Benxi has long been China’s coal and iron production base, with an environment that has steadily worsened as heavy industrial pollutants smudged the city's sky.

Since early this year, the city launched a “blue sky” program to tackle low-altitude pollution sources and key industrial pollutants.

Song Kecheng, director of the city’s environment protection bureau, said the city’s environment has improved a lot due to the program, in which large and medium-sized iron and steel companies and coal-burning boilers were treated in the city.

Statistics show that TSP (total suspended particle) and sulfur dioxide in Benxi’s air have decreased substantially, and dust content has dropped by 9.9 tons per square kilometer in the first half of the year. And in June, dust reduced by 13.1 tons per square kilometer compared with the same month last year.

(Xinhua News Agency 08/14/2001)

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