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Mongolian capital to ban low-grade coal to ease smog

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World Coal,


According to Reuters, Mongolia has announced it will ban the burning of low-grade coal in its capital Ulaanbaatar within the next decade, in an effort to curb toxic air pollution.

According to Reuters, Mongolia has announced it will ban the burning of low-grade coal in its capital Ulaanbaatar within the next decade, in an effort to curb toxic air pollution.

Along with being one of the world’s most polluted cities, Ulaanbaatar is also one of the coldest, and poor residents are forced to burn wood, coal and occasionally trash as temperatures plunge below minus 40°C ( -40° F) in winter.

Poor ‘ger’ districts, a sprawl of traditional tents that have sprung up on the edge of the city, account for about 80% of Ulaanbaatar's winter smog, which has sparked protests from residents.

The country's parliament has already approved a plan that will outlaw coal burning in the central business district next year, Lkhagvasuren Gunbileg, a senior officer at the National Committee on Reducing Air Pollution, told Reuters.

The ban will be implemented ‘systematically step-by-step’ from 2018, she said, and will later be extended into the ger districts housing many former herders who have migrated to the city.

In these areas, harmful breathable particles known as PM2.5 can reach levels well above 1000 micrograms per cubic meter during the winter, 40 times the maximum recommended by the World Health Organisation.

Ulaanbaatar has previously focused on rehousing ger district residents into apartments with access to the heating grid. The government now plans to connect existing homes to city utilities and provide alternative heating methods, Gunbileg said. "There will be a technical expo held to demonstrate to the masses what kind of technology is available and options for heating to choose from instead of coal," she said.

Read the article online at: https://www.worldcoal.com/power/31032017/mongolian-capital-to-ban-low-grade-coal-to-ease-smog/


 

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