The Daily Tar Heel

Serving the students and the University community since 1893

Monday December 5th

China struggles to convince citizens that its air is clean

BEIJING (MCT) — The sky in Beijing is often a murky color, something between gray and brown. But the past few days have been particularly bad: hundreds of flights canceled, sections of highway temporarily closed and entire buildings seemingly vanished from the horizon.

On state television and much of Chinese-language media, the darker days of Beijing frequently are explained by one word: fog.

While at times that may be true, there’s no question that the capital — crammed with cars and a population that’s reportedly grown beyond 19 million — is choking on pollution.

The Global Times, a state-controlled tabloid with nationalist leanings, reported Monday that an engineer at the Beijing Meteorological Bureau had “refuted the idea that the fog is a result of air pollution.”

Instead, according to the state engineer, the fog was created by a large amount of water vapor near the ground and a drop in temperature.

Many Chinese apparently are unconvinced.

State media said that the country’s largest online retail site, akin to eBay, sold more than 30,000 respiratory masks on Sunday alone.

To get the day's news and headlines in your inbox each morning, sign up for our email newsletters.


Comments

The Daily Tar Heel's 2022 Year in Review

Special Print Edition

Games & Horoscopes

Print Edition Games Archive