Ricardo to assess air quality options in three Chinese cities

Environmental consultancy Ricardo has been commissioned by the Asian Development Bank (ADB) to carry out a two-year study into improving air quality in three cities in China.

The project will provide evaluation of air quality policy options for the greater Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei region, using Ricardo’s RapidAir air quality modelling system.

Ricardo will assess air quality policy options for the greater Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei region

The project is designed to support billion dollar investments into improving air quality being made by ADB in north-eastern China.

Substantial work is under way to deliver improvements in air quality in the region, but levels remain well above national and international standards.

Ricardo is working with environmental protection officials in three case study cities to investigate further air quality improvement measures.


Ricardo’s air quality team will use the RapidAir system to perform a cost-benefit analysis and health impact assessment of potential pollution mitigation measures.

This will support policy makers to identify the optimum policy mix to improve air quality and population health. This guidance will influence the development of air quality management plans to 2030.

Ricardo’s RapidAir is an air quality diagnostics and decision support tool that facilitates fast and efficient city-scale air quality modelling and mitigation scenario testing for a range of emission sources and pollutants.

Tim Curtis, Ricardo Energy & Environment’s managing director, said: “Ricardo is delighted to be working closely with the Asian Development Bank and city environmental protection teams on this strategically important project. We look forward to being at the forefront of air quality policy development in China.”

Ben Grebot, project director for Ricardo Energy & Environment, added, “Environmental Protection officers in north-east China are at the forefront of tackling some of the toughest air pollution problems in the world. The Asian Development Bank’s commitment to investing in air quality improvements enables us to bring our air quality policy and modelling expertise to work alongside the city bureaux and national experts to deliver real air quality benefits.”

Ricardo is working on this project with in-country experts from Tsinghua University and Chinese Academy of Environmental Planning.

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