Beijing among cities with worst air pollution

via http://www.cjr.org/the_observatory/beijing_air_pollution_media_co.php?page=all

Pollution was literally off the charts in the Chinese capital this January, exceeding the upper bounds of the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Air Quality Index in the densely populated city of 20 million. Since the Beijing Olympics in 2008 drew international attention to the city’s smog, the news media have covered the hazardous conditions thoroughly and highlighted the danger to public health. Unfortunately, few articles have pointed out that other cities face a similar problem, if not worse.

The EPA’s Air Quality Index works on a 500-point scale whereby a score above 150 is ‘unhealthy’ and anything above 300 is ‘hazardous,’ meaning, “Serious aggravation of heart or lung disease and premature mortality in persons with cardiopulmonary disease and the elderly; serious risk of respiratory effects in general population.” On January 12, the US Embassy in Beijing recorded a measurement of 755.

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