Although, despite what’s going on in the rest of the zones with air-quality problems, it has other relevant sources of contamination such as the industrial zone and in less grade the transport industry.
To explain the main actions that contains the Prevention and Decontamination Plan for Metropolitan Concepción, ConceRespira, the new Minister of Environment, Marcelo Mena, reunited with mayors and representatives of the 10 cities where it will be implemented. These are Concepción, Chiguayante, Hualpén, Lota, Penco, San Pedro de la Paz, Talcahuano y Tomé, cities where the Citizen Consultation will begin for 60 working days.
According to minister Mena, this plan aims to reduce in 17% and 44% diary PM10 and PM2.5 concentrations, respectively, and is part of the government’s policy to not only recognize the environmental problem, but also to confront it. “Is because of all this that today we begin the process to invite the community to participate, and between all make the best decontamination plan for the zone,” said the environmental authority.
“Today we begin the Citizen’s consultation of the new decontamination plan “ConceRespira”, that contains structural methods for residential heating, with the application of the highest Chilean standards for the industry and also for transportation and agricultural burns. This plan will bring the clean air that this zone deserves in 6 years time, and will also have a return of 3 pennies for every penny inverted, with benefits in the health and transport industry. This is huge news that has to do with a decontamination strategy that contemplates 14 plans, and this is the number 13”
The plan will have a strong focus on sustainable heating, including change through subsidies, 15 thousand wood heaters for others more efficient and environmentally friendly, plus 20 thousand subsidies in thermal insulation to diminish wood consumption. Also, open house chimneys are now forbidden and only dry wood is allowed, alongside other measures.
During winter, in critical episodes due to bad air quality (alerts, pre-emergencies and emergencies), wood heating will be forbidden during certain hours. This measures required of the compromise of all the habitants of Great Concepción, because we need to move towards to a sustainable culture to contribute to improve the quality of the air that everyone breathes and it must be seen as an improvement towards better life quality.
Also the industry will have to do a mayor effort in this matter. The plan establishes new standards in the emission of chimneys; the requirements to reduce in 30% the emissions of big industrial establishments, and the obligation of compensate in 120% the contamination they produce. In transportation, it considers the upgrade of 100 buses in 5 years, the incorporation of particle filters and the creation of 100 km in bike routes.