New air quality measurement standards to include PM2.5
According to a statement by China’s Ministry of Environmental Protection, beginning November 1st, a new monitoring standard including both PM10 and PM2.5 particulate matter will replace the former standard which included only larger particles or PM10.
Many other countries, including Japan, Thailand and India already include PM2.5 in their air quality standards. PM2.5 is more dangerous to people's health because the particles are so fine they can enter into the lungs and contribute to acute respiratory symptoms, heart disease, and other health problems.
When air quality standards were revised in 1996, PM2.5 was not included. While specific standards are still unclear, experts say this is an important advancement. Measurement and public disclosure of PM2.5 will provide the basis for monitoring and research on fine particulate matter and their impact on human health.