Beijing to levy congestion charge to ease traffic, reduce pollution

Chronic traffic woes have led officials in Beijing to take action, again. A congestion charge will soon be levied on drivers wishing to travel on select roads in the Chinese capital. Xinhua news agency says the charge is to encourage residents of Beijing to use public transit or bicycles for inner-city jaunts. Xinhua did not detail how the congestion charge will be collected or which roads would be affected.

Beijing's estimated 4.8 million registered vehicles make for constant traffic jams within the city. At times, the backups have become so bad that portions of Beijing's roads look like parking lots. Bejing's efforts to curb congestion and pollution date back to the Olympics in 2008, and the congestion charge is one of the most dramatic steps taken to date by the Chinese capital. We're sure it won't be the last.

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