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The gap between public perceptions and monitoring indicators of environmental quality in Beijing

The gap between public perceptions and monitoring indicators of environmental quality in Beijing

Journal of Environmental Management 277: 111414

ISSN/ISBN: 0301-4797

PMID: 33038674

DOI: 10.1016/j.jenvman.2020.111414

This paper explores the differences between public perceptions and existing monitoring indicators in environmental quality in Beijing. The results reveal, existing indicators do not accurately reflect public perceptions of the environment. Some environmental problems, such as fluffy catkins, are not reflected in the existing indicators, yet have a relatively large influence on public perception. The policymakers and public's variegated understanding of the environment, the lag period of public perceptions of environmental quality change, and lack of standards and monitoring for emerging problems are the three main reasons that resulted in a deviation of monitoring indicators from the public perceptions. Resultantly, to improve the level of environmental governance, it is necessary to take relevant measures that reduce the difference between public perceptions and monitoring indicators. Residents should be surveyed regularly to obtain their public perceptions, and the selection of indicators should not be limited to environmental pollution. In particular, some indicators based on public perception should be developed to complement the existing environmental monitoring protocol. In addition, due to the emerging environmental problems, quality standards and monitoring systems should be updated regularly.

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Accession: 072711831

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