Private Car Owners Pledge To Stay Off Roads During Air Quality Testing Period – Qianlong

F200708042002592988087981Those who have visited Beijing in recent years have expressed concern over the city’s air pollution. This report outlines one measure the Beijing city government is planning to take to pass a planned air quality test: Asking drivers to stay off the roads for the duration of the testing period. Is this cheating? Will it be effective? Beijing based news website reported the story, translated by CDT:

Reporters learned from the Beijing Transportation Management Bureau that, as of today, the 200,000 private car owners in the city promised not to drive during the four days of the “Good Luck Beijing” race [a test event for the 2008 Olympics] and air quality tests.

Yesterday afternoon, the Municipal Transportation Management Bureau and the China Automobile Association Automobile Club branch launched an initiative called: “I contribute to the Olympic Games, drive one day less every week”. Seventeen car clubs and shops in the city also joined this initiative. The initiative called on private car owners to not drive during August 17 to 20 to reduce traffic flow.

The reporter learned that in order to ensure the success of the “Good Luck Beijing” games and normal traffic flow during the air quality testing period, the traffic control authorities took the initiative to coordinate the China Automobile Association and other car clubs and stores to distribute two documents, “A Letter To Beijing Citizens from Beijing Municipal Government,” and the “Traffic Management Control Measures” through their websites, forums, and SMS platforms to nearly one million members.

According to statistics, at present, 120,000 private car drivers have responded positively to the government’s message, through online comments or SMS replies. In those messages, they have said that they will not drive during August 17 – 20. In addition, 80,000 private car owners signed pledges to not drive during that period. [Full Chinese text]

[Image: “Good Luck Beijing” traffic sign in Beijing, from]

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