Air pollution in mega cities in China

Chak K. Chan, Xiaohong Yao

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2261 Scopus citations


Due to its rapidly expanding economic and industrial developments, China is currently considered to be the engine of the world's economic growth. China's economic growth has been accompanied by an expansion of the urban area population and the emergence of a number of mega cities since the 1990. This expansion has resulted in tremendous increases in energy consumption, emissions of air pollutants and the number of poor air quality days in mega cities and their immediate vicinities. Air pollution has become one of the top environmental concerns in China. Currently, Beijing, Shanghai, and the Pearl River Delta region including Guangzhou, Shenzhen and Hong Kong, and their immediate vicinities are the most economically vibrant regions in China. They accounted for about 20% of the total GDP in China in 2005. These are also areas where many air pollution studies have been conducted, especially over the last 6 years. Based on these previous studies, this review presents the current state of understanding of the air pollution problems in China's mega cities and identifies the immediate challenges to understanding and controlling air pollution in these densely populated areas. © 2007 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1-42
Number of pages42
JournalAtmospheric Environment
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1 2008
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Environmental Science
  • Atmospheric Science


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