China’s environment ministry is launching a yearlong investigation into pollution sources in northern cities.
This decision comes as Beijing is suffering from China’s second highest pollution rating.
The environment ministry said it plans to send more than 5,500 people to the north. The investigators will track down major offenders in 28 cities.
Northern China, including the capital Beijing, is the main target in the government’s efforts to curb pollution. There were improvements last year, but the air quality worsened in the first two months of 2017.
Fifteen other provinces and regions are now also being targeted, including Shanghai in the east and Hainan island in the south.
The first round of inspections began last year in big coal-producing regions like Inner Mongolia.
It’s not just the air that’s polluted. Chinese rivers have also become increasingly toxic, as pollution is transferred from the soil into the water supply.