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Chinese worry about how air pollution affects their lives and health. Here, airplanes queue to take off while shrouded in smog at Beijing International Airport on December 5, 2011. Beijing authorities canceled hundreds of flights and shut highways as thick smog descended on the Chinese capital on December 4 and 5, reducing visibility at one of the world's busiest airports.
"...Zhang just bought a new home. And he's telling me the biggest factor behind his purchase was air quality. He says he picked the least polluted part of the city to buy an apartment. So we have the biggest decision of this guys life being determined by air pollution."
Schmitz: Well, throughout last week officials insisted on labeling the pollution "bad weather." They called it fog. They refused to call it smog.
Ryssdal: Nobody really believes that though, right? I mean come on.
Schmitz: No, and that's why a lot people are just angry. They're sick of being lied to like this by a government that's supposed to be taking care of them. People who are really concerned with this are following a Twitter feed from the U.S. embassy in Beijing. The U.S. embassy has been monitoring the air from a machine on its roof. It spits out hourly air quality readings and posts them on Twitter. And all last week, the reading were categorized as either very unhealthy or hazardous. On one day last week, the pollution was so bad that it went beyond what the machine could even read. So, you know, it was pretty clear: don't go outside.
Schmitz: Last week a lot of the roads were closed. Folks, I think, had a hard time getting stuff to market and going to work. But I think what's more important here is that there has been a 60 percent increase in lung cancer in the past decade. So that's going to have a tremendous toll on China's health care system. The World Bank figures China loses $100 billion a year from pollution -- that's 6 percent of China's GDP. [Coughing] Excuse me. I'm actually coughing right now. Just last week, hundreds of flight were cancelled in and out of Beijing because the pilots couldn't see through all this smog. China's economy is definitely taking a hit because of this.
Originally posted by muzzleflash
You cannot become a superpower when your people are all diseased and dying due to massive pollution issues.
Originally posted by Blackmarketeer
Dense smog in Beijing:
Chromic slag (highly toxic!) in Songbo Town, Xiangjiang River;
Wall Street Journal, recovery trumps reduction;
On a river (yes, that's a river):
Smog over Beijing visible from space;
Water pollution throughout China;
And the effect it has on it's population;
What would their opinion of the EPA be?
To see the full range of genetic deformities afflicting China, not just it's human but animals as well;
China's Rapid Development Has Its Cost
What is Transboundary Pollution?
Transboundary pollution is the pollution that originates in one country but is able to cause damage in another country’s environment, by crossing borders through pathways like water or air. Pollution can be transported across hundreds and even thousands of kilometers. The incredible distances that pollution can spread means that it is not contained within the boundaries of any single nation. This is why it is called ‘Transboundary Pollution’.