05:41 12.02.2020

China’s Economic Shutdown Hasn’t Brought Blue Skies to Beijing

Pollution levels in Beijing have soared to the highest level in nearly two years and are likely to worsen. The most usual suspects for the smog have been crimped by the government in order to halt the spread of the Coronavirus. Experts have pointed the cause to several possibilities, including residue from natural gas burned at power plants and home heaters, emissions from steel mills and industrial facilities.
Source: Bloomberg
06:20 10.02.2020

Breathe easier: Real-time database to track world’s worsening air pollution

According to data from the World Health Organisation, over 90% of the world’s population are forced to breathe polluted air. To help the situation, the UN and Swiss tech company IQAir have created a giant international database to track air quality in real time, which they launched at the 10th World Urban Forum in Abu Dhabi. Indeed, on Monday 10th February, the Chinese cities of Shenyang and Beijing were ranked amongst the top 10 most polluted cities in the world according to this live tracker. For years, the city of Shenyang has suffered unbearable levels of air pollution, caused by their heavy activity surrounding fossil-fuel industries including coal mining.
Source: Daily Mail
06:24 09.02.2020

China has positioned itself as a leader in the fight against climate change, but is it really prepared for the role?

Despite the fact that China “likes to cast itself as a world leader in tackling climate change”, the nation “remains – by far – the biggest emitter of carbon dioxide, with total emissions in 2018 standing at about 14 gigatonnes”. Equally, China has increased its capacity for coal fuel by 42.9 gigawatts in the past year, whilst also financing “a quarter of all new coal projects in the rest of the world” through the Belt and Road Initiative.
Source: South China Morning Post
06:34 08.02.2020

The Coronavirus and Xi Jinping’s Worldview

Environmental responsibility and better sustainability are only fourth in the list of priorities included in China’s growth matrix. Sustainability and efforts to combat climate change “will always compete” with Xi’s focus on economic growth through domestic industry improvements and transnational infrastructure initiatives such as the Belt and Road Initiative.
Source: Project Syndicate
06:31 08.02.2020

Lung Cancer and Air Pollution

Lung cancer kills approximately 1.6 million people each year, with common causes amongst non-smokers being air pollution and second-hand smoke. Indoor air pollution, predominately attributed to heating and cooking in the home using fuels like wood and coal, is a greater risk for lower income populations particularly in India and China.
Source: The Morung Express
23:10 04.02.2020

S. Korea unveils 5-year plan to take big bite out of PM2.5 smog

South Korea is launching a major strategy to combat air pollution and the high level of smog in the country, which they believe 30% comes from China. As such, they are asking for their neighbour’s cooperation on implementing measures to fight against this. Indeed, the level of air pollution in South Korea worsens between winter and spring when it is blown in from China.
Source: The Asahi Shimbun