Forty cities in north China, including Beijing and Tianjin, issued or maintained alerts for air pollution yesterday as the PM2.5 readings soared to dangerous levels.
According to Shanghai Daily, Hebei province issued its first red alert for smog, the highest level possible, yesterday afternoon. Four cities within Hebei had already declared a red alert prior to the province-wide alert taking effect.
While Beijing reduced its pollution alert which has been in place since Saturday from red to orange, the PM2.5 readings continued to worsen throughout the day as schools reopened despite the lingering smog.
Guo Yingchun, a spokesman for the provincial meteorological department, said all the province’s 11 cities will roll out strict measures, including limiting the number of vehicles on the road.
Just as in Beijing, cars will be taken off the road according to whether their license plate ends in an odd or even number. Schools will be closed and construction work suspended while heavy industries will be forced to cut production.
Despite the escalating severity of the pollution, Xinhua has done its best to keep a brave face and posted pictures of some fearless residents of Shenyang, a city in the northeastern Liaoning province, casually going out for a run despite the choking smog.
— China Xinhua News (@XHNews) December 23, 2015
Previously on Shanghaiist:
Artist vacuums up Beijing’s air pollution for 100 days, turns all that dust into a brick
Chinese artist camouflages models into Beijing smog as commentary on city pollution
Get your masks ready! Beijing issues its first ever RED ALERT for smog