Judging by the measures taken to improve the environment, the Beijing Olympic Games made the biggest effort compared with previous Olympic Games. This conclusion was based on the findings of the Beijing Olympics air quality consulting group. This group consists of 12 domestic and foreign environmental experts such as Director Ivo Allegrini of the Atmospheric Pollution Research Center at the Italian National Research Institute.
Deputy Director of the Beijing Municipal Environmental Protection Bureau Du Shaozhong said that beginning in 1998, Beijing has invested over 120 billion yuan towards environmental improvement. Two of the three promises for the atmospheric environment, made when Beijing was bidding for the Olympic Games, were fulfilled in 2007. Among the four pollution emission indexes of the final promise, three types have reached the standard; only one regarding respirable particulate matter has not met standards yet.
Du said that in order to further reduce particulate emissions, Beijing has developed a more detailed air protection plan. This plan decrees that before the end of June, Beijing's metallurgy, building materials and refining and petrochemical enterprises will meet more stringent emission standards. High emissions producers such as organic chemical, metallurgy, petrochemical and cement companies are to be eliminated and updated; and electricity will replace coal as the energy source for 50,000 bungalows.
(People's Daily June 25, 2008)