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Improving Air Quality a Regional Issue During Beijing Olympics
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Special working groups will be setup in the Chinese capital of Beijing and four surrounding regions to ensure good air quality during the 2008 Olympics.


The groups will be set up in Beijing, Shanxi, Tianjin, Hebei and Inner Mongolia, according to a report in Tuesday's Beijing News.


Zhang Lijun, deputy director of the State Environmental Protection Administration, said they would look for new ways to deal with air pollution through regional cooperation so as to ensure good air quality during the 2008 Olympics.


Research currently being conducted will result in new measures to ensure good air quality during the games.


Surrounding regions may also be required to take temporary steps along with Beijing during the Olympics, said the newspaper.


Pei Chenghu, deputy director of Beijing Environmental Protection Administration, said pollution in Beijing is a problem for the region, and improving air quality must involve the entire region.


Local statistics show that by the end of August, Beijing had 166 'blue sky' days, 72 days short of its target for the year.


(Xinhua News Agency October 25, 2006)

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