A survey has revealed that more than 33 per cent of urban residents are unhappy with government efforts to curb vehicles' exhaust emissions.
Dissatisfaction with the fumes is the highest among all air pollutants in the mainland which has annually witnessed a rapid growth of vehicles, the survey said.
The satisfaction rate on government efforts to curb exhaust emissions reached only 26 per cent.
The growing number of vehicles in mainland cities is thought to be the major reason behind the poor air quality in the country. It is followed by industrial waste discharges, dust caused by major industrial and real estate construction sites and smells from polluted rivers, garbage dumps, landfill sites and incinerators, the survey said.
"Relevant government departments should pay even greater attention to curbing air pollution caused by vehicles' exhaust emissions," according to Liu Rongxin, director of the survey department at the Canton Public Research Center which conducted the survey.
"Compared with curbing air pollution caused by industrial and construction sites and the catering industry, curbing pollution caused by exhaust emissions is a longer-term and tougher task," Liu said.
Wu Dui, a senior researcher from the Guangzhou Institute of Tropical Oceanic Meteorology, said more clean energies, including gas and batteries, should be used to substitute gasoline to reduce vehicles' exhaust emissions.
"The standards for vehicles' exhaust emissions should be further raised to help curb air pollution," Wu said.
The survey, published on Monday, interviewed more than 3,000 urban residents aged 16 and above in 23 provinces and municipalities during May.
The survey showed that an increasing number of urban residents have shown their satisfaction with government efforts to curb air pollution caused by waste discharges and dust caused from industrial and construction sites and the catering industry.
The satisfaction rate on curbing dust reached 36 per cent while the figure on polluted gases from the catering industry was 34 per cent.
Dissatisfaction registered 27 per cent and 26 per cent respectively.
According to the survey, 34 per cent of urban residents thought air quality has remained unchanged and 17 per cent said it had worsened in past years.
Only 48 per cent thought air quality in urban areas has improved.
Huang Min contributed to this story.