While the Communist Party may have declared the start of a “new era” for China earlier this week at the conclusion of the 19th Party Congress, outside, things still look suspiciously the same.
Grey skies that shrouded China’s capital this week during its big political reshuffle grew even darker on Friday with Beijing’s weather authority being forced to issue an orange alert for air pollution for the entire city as visibility in some areas went down to just 50 meters.
Throughout the day, Beijing’s AQI remained “very unhealthy,” reaching a high score of 292, according to air quality monitor AQCIN.org.
— RT (@RT_com) October 27, 2017
The smoggy skies look to be a major setback for the Chinese government, which has vowed to turn China’s skies blue again (eventually), working particularly hard to do so in Beijing. This winter, Beijing has banned all construction projects in an attempt to ward off annual airpocalpyses.
Already, the city has shut down its last coal-fired power plant and has been busy switching homes on the outskirts from coal to natural gas heating while also setting up a special “smog squad” to keep unrepentant polluters in check.
Yet, even with all of these efforts, cleaning up China’s air is a tall task. Earlier this month, China’s environmental minister admitted that meeting this year’s air quality targets will “face huge difficulties.”
Fortunately, a cold front is scheduled to arrive in Beijing tomorrow which should push the harmful particulates in the sky away, though we have a feeling that they’ll be back… with a vengeance.
[Images via Caixin]
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