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Report Announced By Pearl River Delta Regional Air Quality Monitoring Network | 29 Oct 08

The Environmental Protection Department ( EPD ) of the Government of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region and the Environmental Protection Bureau of Guangdong Province ( GDEPB ) today ( October 29 ) announced the report on the monitoring results of four major air pollutants ( sulphur dioxide, nitrogen dioxide, ozone, and respirable suspended particulates ) measured by the Pearl River Delta Regional Air Quality Monitoring Network ( Network ).

The report, which covers the period between January and June 2008, is available on both the GDEPB’s website ( ) and EPD’s website ( ).

In general, the overall concentrations of most pollutants were generally higher in the winter months ( January to March ). Lower concentration levels were recorded as summer approached ( June ). Apart from heavier rainfall and higher mixing layer, the relatively clean maritime air stream prevailed in the Pearl River Delta ( PRD ) region under the influence of southern monsoon and also accounted for a lower level of pollution in summer time. The air quality was better in the coastal areas than in the central and northern areas of the region in the first half of 2008, most probably as a result of relatively more favourable conditions for dispersion of pollutants in the former.

Overall, 72% of the Regional Air Quality Index as recorded by the network in the first half of 2008 were in Grade I or II, meaning the pollutant concentrations are within Class 2 National Ambient Air Quality Standards ( NAAQS ). Intermittent high level of pollutants exceeding Class 2 NAAQS ( applicable to general residential areas ) was recorded in all monitoring locations of the network in the reporting period, which was mainly triggered by meteorological conditions unfavourable to pollutant dispersion.

During the reporting period, the network operated smoothly in accordance with the Quality Assurance/Quality Control ( QA/QC ) Operating Procedures, which ensure that air quality data from the monitoring stations are of a high degree of precision and accuracy,

The network is one of the major achievements of co-operation between the two sides in environmental protection. It comprises 16 automatic ambient monitoring stations scattering over the region, 13 of which are in the PRD Economic Zone – Guangzhou, Shenzhen, Zhuhai, Foshan, Zhongshan, Huizhou, Dongguan, Jiangmen, Zhaoqing, Shunde, Huiyang, Panyu and Conghua – and three are in Tsuen Wan, Tung Chung and Tap Mun of Hong Kong. The Guangdong Provincial Environmental Monitoring Centre and EPD are respectively responsible for the co-ordination, management and operation of the monitoring stations of the two sides.

The environmental monitoring authorities of the two sides will continue to monitor the regional air quality and regularly announce the latest monitoring results. The monitoring results for the whole of 2008 are expected to be available in April 2009.

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