Beijing is going to create a "green necklace" of trees in an effort to cut down city smog

Lian Parsons
Millions of people in the capital city breathe in polluted air
Millions of people in the capital city breathe in polluted air (Source: Getty Images)

Beijing is planning to plant a “green necklace” around the city in an attempt to alleviate some of the overwhelming smog.

The capital and the surrounding province Hebei will plant trees, establish green belts and utilise rivers and wetlands to try to drain some of the hazardous pollution from the area.

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The official statement on the Hebei government website released yesterday also proposed transforming ZhouZhou, a city located north of Beijing, into a “sponge city.” The city would be able to recycle and retain water sources to help combat drought in the area.

The timeline for this project is unclear, as is the budget.

Other proposals include “ventilation corridors” to channel wind and air to disperse smog. Last year, Beijing officials were planning on building five of these corridors, each at least 1,500 feet wide throughout the city, as well as a number of smaller ones.

Previous projects to address environmental problems made efforts to prevent the spread of the Gobi Desert by planting trees along the border. However, deserts have continued to expand in critical regions.

This initiative is part of a series to assist in coordinating development planning between Hebei, Beijing and Tianjin, which have a combined population of about 110m people.

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Big cities in China are notorious for their smog levels caused by industrial activity and massive levels of transportation. In an effort to curb further pollution, Beijing is trying to slow population growth and relocate some industries to Hebei.

The city has also pledged to cut down on coal consumption and decommissioned its last coal-fired power plant this month.

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