China considering delay of China Ⅵ emission standard implementation
China's Ministry of Ecology and Environment (MEE) said on April 9 it is weighing delaying the implementation of the China Ⅵ emission standard, which was due to come into effect on July 1, 2020, as the COVID-19 pandemic has snagged global automobile industry and supply chain.
According to Wu Xianfeng, deputy head of the Department of Atmospheric Environment under the MEE, the policy is designed to extend the grace period before automakers complete their transition to China Ⅵ, which is purportedly the strictest ever emission standard, and offer them more time to clear inventories of old cars.
Amid the shocking waves brought by the coronavirus, China was hampered accordingly in moving ahead with the conduct of the new stricter standard. Since the hardest-hit Hubei province is an important automobile manufacturing base, the influence has radiated countrywide. The supply of auto parts, the production certification and the clearance of inventories have all been disturbed. Most importantly, the viral outbreak makes troubles for the control of particulate matter volume.
Although the virus has diminished in China, it is premature to expect a rapid recovery as the global supply chain is being hit by overseas spread of coronavirus.
All light-duty vehicles sold and registered from July 1, 2020 were required to meet the China Ⅵ emission standard, according to a document jointly issued by China's environmental protection department and the AQSIQ on December 23, 2016.
By setting two types of emission limits, the China Ⅵ standard was set to implemented in a systematic fashion. The China 6a was supposed to be the standard that light-duty vehicles sold and registered from July 1, 2020 should meet, and the China 6b was for July 1, 2023.
A number of cities and provinces who are struggling with severe air contamination have decided to conduct both phases much earlier than the state's schedule. Some cities or provinces like Beijing, Shenzhen, Shanghai, Tianjin and Guangdong opted to skip the China 6a and directly execute the China 6b standard from July 1, 2019.