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BEIJING - Beijing on Monday unveiled a package of measures to curb vehicle emissions overthe next five years as part of the capital's increasing efforts to improve air quality in the city.
The package is part of an action plan released by the municipal government, which haspledged to reduce PM 2.5 density by 25 percent or more by 2017.
According to the package, the municipal government will restrict the number of new cars on theroad each year from January 2014.
By 2017, the number of vehicles in the city is expected to be no more than six million, accordingto the package. Statistics from Beijing Traffic Management Bureau show the city had 5.35million vehicles by the end of July.
By promoting new energy and small displacement vehicles, reducing intensity of vehicle useand strictly enforcing regulations, the government expects to reduce total vehicle fuelconsumption by 5 percent or more compared to 2012.
The city's traffic management and environmental protection bureaus will prepare traffic controlrules for passenger cars by the end of 2013 which will mainly focus on time and zonerestrictions. The rules are aimed to be implemented in 2014.
In addition, vehicles from other cities will be subject to more time and area restrictions from2014 at the earliest.
The municipal government has also vowed to cover downtown areas with at least 480 km of buslanes and introduce a public bicycle rental system by 2017 in order to make publictransportation 60 percent of total vehicle trips made in the city.
According to the plan, air quality will improve significantly by 2017, with PM 2.5 densitycontrolled to around 60 micrograms per cubic meter.
PM 2.5 are airborne particles measuring less than 2.5 microns in diameter which can posehealth risks.