China inspects barbecues, closes some factories to battle smog: Xinhua

Buildings of a residential compound are seen in the haze during a polluted day in Beijing, China, March 17, 2016. REUTERS/Stringer

SHANGHAI (Reuters) - Provincial governments across China are taking measures ranging from inspecting outdoor barbecues to halting production at industrial plants to reduce worsening air pollution, the official Xinhua news agency said on Saturday. China has adopted various measures over the years to reduce the blankets of smog which shroud many of the country's northern cities in the winter, causing hazardous traffic conditions and disrupting daily life. The local government in Hebei province has halted seven major industries in the city including steel, cement and glass, said Xinhua. The Shijiazhuang city government, also in Hebei province, said on Thursday that car owners with certain number plates can only drive on specific days until the end of the year, following days of acrid smog. Authorities in Chengdu, a city in the southwestern province of Sichuan, have sent law enforcement officials to inspect construction sites and barbecues. Meanwhile, in the northern municipality of Tianjin, the municipal government has asked 119 companies to halt production until January. Kindergartens, primary and middle schools have been advised to reduce outdoor activities in Taiyuan, a city in the northern province of Shanxi. (Reporting by Engen Tham; Editing by Kim Coghill)

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