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Open AccessArticle

Spatial-Temporal Evolution of PM2.5 Concentration and its Socioeconomic Influence Factors in Chinese Cities in 2014–2017

by Yazhu Wang 1,2,3, Xuejun Duan 1,3,* and Lei Wang 1,3
1
Nanjing Institute of Geography and Limnology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Nanjing 210008, China
2
College of Resources and Environment, University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100049, China
3
Key Laboratory of Watershed Geographic Sciences, Nanjing Institute of Geography and Limnology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Nanjing 210008, China
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(6), 985; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16060985
Received: 18 February 2019 / Revised: 11 March 2019 / Accepted: 17 March 2019 / Published: 19 March 2019
PM2.5 is a main source of China’s frequent air pollution. Using real-time monitoring of PM2.5 data in 338 Chinese cities during 2014–2017, this study employed multi-temporal and multi-spatial scale statistical analysis to reveal the temporal and spatial characteristics of PM2.5 patterns and a spatial econometric model to quantify the socio-economic driving factors of PM2.5 concentration changes. The results are as follows: (1) The annual average value of PM2.5 concentration decreased year by year and the monthly average showed a U-shaped curve from January to December. The daily mean value of PM2.5 concentration had the characteristics of pulse-type fluctuation and the hourly variation presented a bimodal curve. (2) During 2014–2017, the overall PM2.5 pollution reduced significantly, but that of more than two-thirds of cities still exceeded the standard value (35 μg/m3) regulated by Chinese government. PM2.5 pollution patterns showed high values in central and eastern Chinese cities and low values in peripheral areas, with the distinction evident along the same line that delineates China’s uneven population distribution. (3) Population agglomeration, industrial development, foreign investment, transportation, and pollution emissions contributed to the increase of PM2.5 concentration. Urban population density contributed most significantly while economic development and technological progress reduced PM2.5 concentration. The results also suggest that China in general remains a “pollution shelter” for foreign-funded enterprises. View Full-Text
Keywords: PM2.5 concentration; spatial-temporal evolution; socioeconomic influence factors; China PM2.5 concentration; spatial-temporal evolution; socioeconomic influence factors; China
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Wang, Y.; Duan, X.; Wang, L. Spatial-Temporal Evolution of PM2.5 Concentration and its Socioeconomic Influence Factors in Chinese Cities in 2014–2017. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16, 985.

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