This year's People's National Congress brought with it not just the weekend of blue skies that tends to occur whenever the Government wants to prove a point, but a promise from Chinese premier Li Keqiang
(aka Big Cheese No 2) that drastic steps will be taken to ease both the environmental and personal burden of the smog, resulting in a cleaner China and hopefully a massive drop in pollution mask
Not a good look on anyone, really. Photo: Shutterstock
So what, according to Li, will these measures be? Well, there's a load of 'em, and they seem to be designed to provide a comprehensive solution to the problem that commentators worldwide deem one of China's most serious.
Among other ideas, the Premier's speech outlined plans to subject 'key sources' of industrial pollutants to 24-hour online monitoring, modernise power stations, slash the country's reliance on coal, drive down vehicle emissions
and promote alternative modes of transport
. He also spoke of increasing accountability by cracking down on government officials who turn a blind eye to environmental issues or air pollution.
The language wasn't quite as strong as his 2014 speech, when Li 'declared war' on pollution, but if these measures are put in place they will do a lot to improve the quality of air in a very real way over the next few months.
Less of this, please. Photo: Flickr/Jens Schott Knudsen
Dude wasn't mincing his words, though. Speaking simultaneously to those assembled, the world's media and to each and every one of us who've ever hidden inside for days on end glued to the air purifier
, the pollution-busting Premier stated that 'tackling smog is down to every last one of us, and success depends on action and commitment. As long as the whole of our society keeps trying we will have more and more blue skies with each passing year.'
We'll take this instead, thanks!
More and more blue skies with each passing year? Yes please, People's National Congress!