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Measures in place for green World Expo
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Following its success as a co-host of the Beijing "Green Olympics", authorities in Shanghai Thursday outlined plans to ensure an equally environmentally friendly World Expo 2010.

China Hall, one of the main buildings for the 2010 Shanghai World Expo, was unveiled in the exhibition center on September 8, 2008.

China Hall, one of the main buildings for the 2010 Shanghai World Expo, is unveiled in the exhibition center on September 8, 2008.

Zhang Quan, director of the Shanghai environmental protection bureau, said at a press briefing that an eco-town, or recycling park, is currently under construction to encourage the development of a circular economy.

Within the town, companies engaged in various kinds of waste treatment and recycling will create an industrial chain that will make such an economy sustainable, he said.

"Environmental protection is not just about waste treatment. More importantly, it is about the recycling of materials in order for us to be really resource-efficient," Zhang said.

He added that he would like to see more communities and schools, not just commercial enterprises, engaged in promoting the development of circular economies.

Meanwhile, Zhang said the city is also set to bring in a "total pollution load control" for nitrogen oxide, ammonia nitrogen and total phosphorous, which will add to the usual barometers for water pollution such as chemical oxygen demand.

Volatile organic compounds, which are an organic chemical air pollutant, will also be placed under close watch and control, he said.

"The Beijing Olympics set a good example for Shanghai to practice a green World Expo," he said.

"But given its wider range of influence and longer timeframe, we need to take stronger and more practical measures to bring about a successful and environmentally friendly event."

Wu Chengjian, director of the international cooperation department of the environmental protection bureau, said the Shanghai Expo venue will be equipped with air quality monitoring facilities throughout the event.

An environmental emergency mechanism will also be put in place to deal with accidents, he said.

Furthermore, the city is working with the United Nations Environment Program on a Green Expo guidebook for visitors and residents, which will help them to be eco-friendly during their tour of the facilities, he said.

An international forum on green Expos will also be held during the 2010 event, Wu said.

Also at Thursday's press conference, the bureau outlined its fourth three-year environmental protection campaign, which is expected to start next year.

It said the city will strengthen its pollutant control in rural and suburban areas, and introduce further caps on noise pollution.

In 2000, the Shanghai government launched a campaign to improve its environment. Since then, it has spent almost 180 billion yuan (US$26.24 billion) on green projects.

(China Daily September 12, 2008)

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