Something in the Air

April 15, 2013 | By | Reply More

Beijing SmogA recent article in The Economist discusses the problem of the increasing air pollution in China. The article, entitled “Something in the Air”, discusses the recent air quality in Beijing, China. The air has been polluted in China at record high levels and is very dangerous for Chinese citizens. The smallest and most dangerous thing in the air was called PM2.5. PM2.5 causes 0.1% of Chinese deaths every year, and has dangerous long-tern consequences for citizens’ health. Because the Chinese have been had the attitude of “anything for the growth of GDP”, they have not devoted enough attention to the environment as a serious problem. Moreover, there are seventy-four cities around the country that have reported air pollution. The Chinese government needs to address this very serious problem.

Recently, when I was visiting my hometown in China, it was terribly bad because the air was do terribly polluted. I could not stand outside for very long, and most residents donned face masks to protect them from the pollution; even with a mask, I could still found it difficult to breath, and developed a cough after only a few days. The pollution made visibility outside so poor that it caused many of car accident as well. My own sight was limited to about fifty meters when I was standing outside. It was the same, if not even worse for drivers. Over the course of the afternoon, the sky  became yellow, and something like dust flew around, choking residents of the city as they hurried down the street.

The Chinese residents suffered the most damage from the air, but it is important to consider that they are also the ones that made this happened. The growth of population, the increasing numbers of cars on the road, and the rise in industrialization that has taken place over the last decade has resulted in staggering levels of pollution. China has valued the growth of the GDP over concern for the environment, and those decisions are now coming back to haunt them. The Chinese government really should take some actions to improve the situation they are dealing with right now.

The huge factory environment pollution was the main problem that caused the increase in pollution. We should think about the environment around us, not just think about GDP. We should make it better. Not only for us, but also for future generations. We could decrease the pollution from the factories. We also could use more clean energy cars, which reduce automobile exhaust. There are a number of way to improve our environment. We just need to do it, rather than talk about doing it.


Category: China, Energy Economics

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