BEIJING – An inspection campaign, launched by the Chinese government in April to combat pollution in Beijing and other northern areas, found two-thirds (69 percent) of the firms investigated were not complying with anti-pollution rules, the Ministry of Environmental Protection said on Friday.
After the first two weeks of the inspection, it was found that 2,808 firms – of a total of 4,707 investigated so far – do not follow regulations in Beijing, Tianjin and the neighboring Hebei province, which are the most affected by smog.
The campaign, part of China’s war on pollution, and initiated by the Chinese government four years ago, has mobilized 5,600 inspectors in 28 provinces in northern parts of the country.
Towards the end of March, China’s environmental authorities said atmospheric pollution in the country had increased during the first two months of 2017, despite a descending trend registered over the last few years.
In 2016, China recorded 137,800 violations of environmental laws – 34 percent more than in 2015 – and imposed fines of over 6.63 billion Yuan ($963 million), which is a rise of 56 percent.