A study by the Institute of Public & Environmental Affairs (IPEA), based in Beijing, China, has found that steel factories in the Shandong and Hebei provinces exceed national standards where nitrogen oxide emissions are concerned.

According to IPEA, the companies concerned were in ‘serious breach’ of discharge standards.

Air pollution is a big issue in China at present with smog outbreaks early last year affecting more than 600 million people across a number of provinces.

The problem is serious enough for the Chinese government to outline plans to cut coal consumption, close steel plants and reduce the number of cars on the roads – even if it means slower economic growth.

IPEA identified 4,000 companies that it claims contribute 65% of industrial emissions in China. In Shandong province, 61% of the 1009 companies that published their nitrogen oxide emissions data exceeded the current national standard, according to the IPEA study. New and more stringent standards are being introduced in July and it is thought that some companies are a long way from compliance.

As China opens up about industrial emissions, it is being reported that air quality monitoring data in Beijing, Dongguan, Nanjing and Suzhou is ‘close to international levels’.

Source: Bloomberg.