On-road vehicle emission control in Beijing: past, present, and future.Environ Sci Technol. 2011 Jan 01; 45(1):147-53.ES
Beijing, the capital of China, has experienced rapid motorization since 1990; a trend that is likely to continue. The growth in vehicles and the corresponding emissions create challenges to improving the urban air quality. In an effort to reduce the impact of vehicle emissions on urban air quality, Beijing has adopted a number of vehicle emission control strategies and policies since the mid 1990 s. These are classified into seven categories: (1) emission control on new vehicles; (2) emission control on in-use vehicles; (3) fuel quality improvements; (4) alternative-fuel and advanced vehicles; (5) economic policies; (6) public transport; and (7) temporal traffic control measures. Many have proven to be successful, such as the Euro emission standards, unleaded gasoline and low sulfur fuel, temporal traffic control measures during the Beijing Olympic Games, etc. Some, however, have been failures, such as the gasoline-to-LPG taxi retrofit program. Thanks to the emission standards for new vehicles as well as other controls, the fleet-average emission rates of CO, HC, NO(X), and PM(10) by each major vehicle category are decreasing over time. For example, gasoline cars decreased fleet-average emission factors by 12.5% for CO, 10.0% for HC, 5.8% for NO(X), and 13.0% for PM(10) annually since 1995, and such a trend is likely to continue. Total emissions for Beijing's vehicle fleet increased from 1995 to 1998. However, they show a clear and steady decrease between 1999 and 2009. In 2009, total emissions of CO, HC, NO(X), and PM(10) were 845,000 t, 121,000 t, 84,000 t, and 3700 t, respectively; with reductions of 47%, 49%, 47%, and 42%, relative to 1998. Beijing has been considered a pioneer in controlling vehicle emissions within China, similar to the role of California to the U.S. The continued rapid growth of vehicles, however, is challenging Beijing's policy-makers.