Changing China

Giant on the move


July 30, 2008

With only 9 days to go before the opening of the Olympic Games, the iconic Bird’s Nest national stadium in Beijing was visible again for the second day running on Wednesday (July 30). The stadium had been shrouded in smog for days previously, despite last-ditch attempts to turn the smokey and dusty Chinese capital into the promised pollution-free Olympic venue. The temperature on Wednesday was forecast to be around 33 degrees Celsius with 78 percent humidity. The Beijing Ministry for Environmental Protection was showing the Chinese Air Pollution Index (API) on Wednesday as API 90. This figure is valid from 1200 the day before until 1200 local (0300 GMT) the present day. This is grade 2 and counts as a “blue sky day”. Beijing could restrict more cars and shut more factories if air pollution persists during the Olympic Games. The authorities have ordered many cars off roads and halted much construction and factory production in an effort to cut smog before the Games open on August 8. But the city has still endured hazy skies over the past week, and again on Monday (July 28), raising fears that the sultry heat Beijing often experiences in August could make for a cocktail of haze, fumes and dust for tens of thousands of athletes and visitors. see the latest smogwatch video from around the Olympic green here


I guess the two biggest environmental concerns for China for the opening ceremonies are smog and rain. I’ve been fascinated by China’s weather modification technology which has gotten some, but not enough, press lately. Does somebody have expertise in this kind of technology? Can it truly be used effectively and reliably to decrease the chance of rain at the Olympics?

Posted by OW | Report as abusive

hey hey i’ve got a humour site devoted to the beijing olympic games’ smog situ – check it out at or oh and i want submissions


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