|9||Baoding Shi, Hebei|
(local time)SEE WORLD AQI RANKING
|1||Congtai East Sewage Treatment Plant|
|2||Handan Mining Institute|
|3||Yongnian District Experimental High School|
|5||Xiangquan Puyuan Community|
|6||Yongnian River Spring Water Plant|
|7||Linzhang No. 3 Middle School|
|8||Chengan Netcom Company|
|9||Guangping County Party Committee|
|10||Qiu County Government|
(local time)SEE WORLD AQI RANKING
live AQI index
|Air pollution level||Air quality index||Main pollutant|
|Moderate|| 97 US AQI||PM2.5|
PM2.5 concentration in Handan is currently 6.8 times the WHO annual air quality guideline value
|Close your windows to avoid dirty outdoor air|
|Sensitive groups should reduce outdoor exercise|
|Tuesday, Oct 4|
Good 31 US AQI
|Wednesday, Oct 5|
Moderate 57 US AQI
|Thursday, Oct 6|
Moderate 72 US AQI
Moderate 97 US AQI
|Saturday, Oct 8|
Unhealthy for Sensitive Groups 119 US AQI
|Sunday, Oct 9|
Good 35 US AQI
|Monday, Oct 10|
Moderate 56 US AQI
|Tuesday, Oct 11|
Moderate 78 US AQI
|Wednesday, Oct 12|
Moderate 93 US AQI
|Thursday, Oct 13|
Unhealthy 170 US AQI
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Handan is a prefecture-level city located in the southwest of Hebei province, China. It shares land borders with four other provinces. As a result of the census conducted in 2010 it had an estimated population of just over 9 million people.
In the second quarter of 2021, Handan was experiencing a quality of air that was classified as being “Unhealthy for sensitive groups” with a US AQI reading of 137. This is in accordance with recommendations by the World Health Organisation (WHO). The concentration levels of the six main pollutants were as follows: PM2.5 - 50 µg/m³, PM10 - 114 µg/m³, ozone (O3) - 152 µg/m³, nitrogen dioxide (NO2) - 16 µg/m³, sulphur dioxide (SO2) - 16 µg/m³ and carbon monoxide (CO) - 780 µg/m³. The figures are quoted in microns/micrograms per cubic metre.
With relatively high levels of pollution, it is best not to open doors and windows to prevent the ingress of more dirty air. Those of a sensitive disposition should avoid venturing outside until the air quality improves. Everybody should avoid rigorous outdoor exercise as even healthy people are affected by polluted air. If there is an air purifier available, it is advisable to use it to ensure the good quality of the indoor environment.
Having studied the recently released figures from 2020 on the IQAir website, it can be seen that the air quality varies throughout the year. Hardly surprising as it can differ from day to day and indeed even differ throughout the day. The months with the lowest quality air were the winter months of November, December, January and February when the quality was classes as “Unhealthy” with readings of 66.6 µg/m³, 84.1 µg/m³, 143.4 µg/m³, and 65.4 µg/m³ respectively.
A large spike is clearly noticeable for January. The rest of the year, with the exception of August, was registered with levels classified as being “Unhealthy for sensitive groups” with readings between 35.5 and 55.4 µg/m³. August was the cleanest month of the year with “Moderate” levels of pollution with a reading of 31.1 µg/m³.
When compared to previous years the quality can be seen to be improving year after year. In 2017 when data was first recorded, the level stood at 96.7 µg/m³, followed by 74 µg/m³ in 2018.
2019 again saw an improvement with a 64.3 µg/m³ measurement and finally, 58.9 µg/m³ was noted for 2020.
Hebei Province is the province with the highest concentration of heavily polluted cities in China. Residents of the two villages of Nansitou and Dongluzhuang report that some manufacturers will start the most polluting processes at night because government departments rarely check at that time. A website of the Hebei government recorded approximately 11,000 pollution complaints in the past nine years. Among them, 700 complaints were related to the discharge of pollutants at night. Many complainants stated that the local environmental protection department did not take measures to solve the problem.
Hebei Province surrounds Beijing on three sides and is also the source of one-third of Beijing’s air pollution. Because of this, the pollution problem in Hebei Province has attracted more attention. The above-mentioned village is located near Handan, an important steel town in China, and official statistics show that Handan was the most polluted Chinese city in the first four months of 2017.
Handan is an old industrial base. There are 613 enterprises in key industries such as steel, coking, cement and casting, and the total pollutant emissions have ranked amongst the top three in Hebei for many years.
Handan is known as the "Steel City and Coal City", and the improvement of the steel industry's governance standards has become the primary task of the new round of air pollution prevention and control battles. In Hebei Xinjin Iron and Steel Co., Ltd., it is seen that the company is stepping up equipment transformation. The head of the company's environmental protection department said that in this round of ultra-low emission standard transformation, Xinjin Iron and Steel Company has invested 120 million yuan to install 3 sets of de-nitrification and de-whitening equipment for 3 sintering machines. The entire renovation project is expected to be completed within a few months. By then, the concentration of particulate matter emissions will be controlled below 10 µg/m³, sulphur dioxide will be controlled below 35 µg/m³, and nitrogen oxides will be controlled below 50 µg/m³, meeting ultra-low emission requirements.
The discharge standards of major pollutants have been improved, and the governance of unorganised emissions is also deepening. In the upgrading and transformation, Xinjin Iron and Steel Company simultaneously invested nearly 100 million yuan to control the source of all unorganised dust points such as the company's shed, coal crushing, blanking port and the belt and coke feeding point. Dust suppression measures for factory roads and areas with severe dust to reduce fugitive emissions are being introduced and strictly enforced.
Breathing unclean air not only causes discomfort in the throat but also can cause serious diseases, because greenhouse gases and airborne particles can damage the human lungs and cause diseases such as asthma. Children and adults are not immune. In addition, air pollution can cause damage to various organs of the human body.
Although air pollution has the most impact on human health, it also has a significant impact on many different types of ecosystems, reducing crop yields and endangering forest health. It also reduces atmospheric visibility, accelerates the corrosion of materials, buildings, monuments and cultural sites, and causes the acidification of sensitive lake ecosystems.
Air pollution is also closely related to climate change because many greenhouse gases (GHG) and air pollutants come from the same source. Many air pollutants are not only harmful to human health, but also powerful climate forcing factors, which will not only affect the lives of people today but also endanger future generations. Coordinated measures to reduce air pollution and greenhouse gases, such as measures to address short-term climate pollutants (SLCP), can bring great benefits to public health and the environment.