Chinese City Registers Pollution 300 Percent Over Level Considered Hazardous For Humans

220px-beijing_smog_comparison_august_2005We have followed the environmental meltdown in China which only recently moved to deal with a myriad of pollutants that have created cancer spikes and suffocating health conditions.  Air pollution is the most obvious area of neglect and average Chinese are beginning to complain about pollution that continues to set records for unhealthy levels.  I have previously discussed how my trips to China through the years have found horrendous levels of pollution where one is unable to see beyond half a block on some days in cities like Beijing.  For decades, the authoritarian government posted false readings that became increasing comical, but sites like the one at the U.S. embassy has forced officials to admit to the alarming levels — as if the lack of line of sight vision did not already confirm the prior misrepresentations.  This week, one regional capital, Harbin, has effectively shutdown due to levels of particulate pollution that would be considered unimaginable in many areas.  Parts of Harbin are reporting levels of more than 1,000 PM2.5 — the level considered hazardous is 300.  Thus, the city is over 300 percent higher than the hazardous level for human health.

Schools have been closed and people have been told to hunker down in their homes. What is interesting is that the level of pollution is taking on a political dimension. While China continues to censor news and control social media sites, there remains criticism on sites like Weibo. Citizens are discussing how the elite in government use public money to install expensive air cleaning systems in their offices and homes while the rest of China suck in the hazardous levels of pollutants. The Chinese government is clearly worried about the political dimension. You can only scare citizens so much when you are forcing them to breathe in poisons. At some point, they are going to refuse to go along with conditions that are clearly killing them.

Last week, the World Health Organization agency issued a report showing global deaths associated with air pollution. Not only did it link pollution to lung cancer but also bladder cancer. The International Agency for Research on Cancer, based in Lyon, France, also cited a link to heart disease. Governments often try to bury reports on the levels of actual deaths associated with air pollution. In this report, air pollution is linked to 223,000 deaths from lung cancer alone around the world in 2010. Particulate matter like that in China plays an equally hazardous role in deaths from cancer.

The level of pollution in Harbin — with 11 million people — has now exceeded the record set by Beijing last year.

With political power held in the hands of one party and a government that has long placed production ahead of every value, China is now a nightmare of a modern industrial wasteland. It would be interesting to see how the food and pollution scandals are affecting tourism. Cities like Harbin now look like some movie set of a post-apocalyptic industrial wasteland — not exactly an appealing prospect for most families.

Source: Yahoo

50 thoughts on “Chinese City Registers Pollution 300 Percent Over Level Considered Hazardous For Humans

  1. Interesting…. Now if we could just get the oil companies and other. Mfg in the US to contain and not pollute the soil, water and air we’d being doing ok…. But you can buy off government intrusion if you have good or the best connected lobbiest…..

  2. One of the factors cited was furnaces daring to come on for the first time for the cold season. Going to be a long winter in China. At what reading over 1,000 do people just start keeling over?

  3. Beijing and Moscow are two cities that have affected my ability to breathe and have caused pain in my eyes as well as my lungs. At least in Moscow, they provide gas masks in your hotel room, right next to the hair dryer. LOL. As comical as it is, it is true.

  4. “Beijing and Moscow are two cities that have affected my ability to breathe and have caused pain in my eyes as well as my lungs. At least in Moscow, they provide gas masks in your hotel room, right next to the hair dryer. LOL. As comical as it is, it is true.”

    DavidM,

    Funny as it might seem, but nevertheless true, Russia and China exhibit the end games of “Free Market Capitalism”. In both countries the market is king
    and the large corporations run unchecked as long as they pay homage to the autocratic governments. Such is the end game of all Randian vision. The cooperation between rapacious corporations and the State. It is inevitable from the mindset you preach, but the log in your eye is too big to let you see it.

  5. Mike Spindell wrote: “Funny as it might seem, but nevertheless true, Russia and China exhibit the end games of “Free Market Capitalism”

    What planet do you live on? China is communist, and Russia was communist until Boris Yeltsin banned the communist party 1991 for driving their country into bankruptcy. The new communist party in Russia (Communist Party of the Russian Federation) is their second largest political party. These countries do not represent examples of Free Market Capitalism. They are examples of the OPPOSITE of Free Market Capitalism. The best you can say is that they are moving toward Free Market Capitalism because it is more successful than socialism and communism. What are the sources of your misinformation? Is it your imagination, or do you actually read it somewhere?

  6. That is one scary place to live. If China does not begin to tackle the problem, the corporations that it is serving won’t have any workers alive to make their cheap products.

  7. David M,

    Your memory fails you, or the log in your eye prevents you from seeing that you don’t know whereof you speak:

    “Originally a supporter of Mikhail Gorbachev, Yeltsin emerged under the perestroika reforms as one of Gorbachev’s most powerful political opponents. On 29 May 1990 he was elected the chairman of the Russian Supreme Soviet. On 12 June 1991 he was elected by popular vote to the newly created post of President of the Russian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic (SFSR), at that time one of the 15 constituent republics of the Soviet Union. He won 57% of the vote in a six-candidate contest and became the third democratically elected leader of Russia in history. Upon the resignation of Mikhail Gorbachev and the final dissolution of the Soviet Union on 25 December 1991, Yeltsin remained in office as the President of the Russian Federation, the USSR’s successor state. Yeltsin was reelected in the 1996 election; in the second round of the election Yeltsin defeated Gennady Zyuganov from the revived Communist Party by a margin of 13%. However, Yeltsin never recovered his early popularity after a series of economic and political crises in Russia in the 1990s.

    He vowed to transform Russia’s socialist command economy into a free market economy and implemented economic shock therapy, price liberalization and privatization programs. Due to the method of privatization, a good deal of the national wealth fell into the hands of a small group of oligarchs.[2] Much of the Yeltsin era was marked by widespread corruption, inflation, economic collapse and enormous political and social problems that affected Russia and the other former states of the USSR. Within the first few years of his presidency, many of Yeltsin’s political supporters turned against him and Vice President Alexander Rutskoy denounced the reforms as “economic genocide”.[3]

    Ongoing confrontations with the Supreme Soviet climaxed in the October 1993 Russian constitutional crisis in which Yeltsin illegally ordered the dissolution of the parliament, which then attempted to remove Yeltsin from office. The military eventually sided with Yeltsin and besieged and shelled the Russian White House, resulting in the deaths of 187 people. Yeltsin then scrapped the existing constitution, temporarily banned political opposition and deepened his economic experimentation. He then introduced a new constitution with stronger presidential power and it was approved by referendum on 12 December 1993 with 58.5% of voters in favour.

    On 31 December 1999, Yeltsin made a surprise announcement of his resignation, leaving the presidency in the hands of his chosen successor, then-Prime Minister Vladimir Putin. Yeltsin left office widely unpopular with the Russian population.[4] By some estimates, his approval ratings when leaving office were as low as 2%.”

    Yeltsin was supported by the G.H.W. Bush administration which sent advisers
    to him to instruct him on how to set up a “Free Enterprise” system.

    As for China, perhaps you might take your cohort Hskiprob’s advice and read Marx. Please point out to me where large, private corporations are part of the Communist Plan. Just because people call themselves “communists” doesn’t mean they are. The analogy is that just because people call themselves supporters of our Constitution, doesn’t mean that they understand, or support it.

  8. Conspiracy Theory time: this is another form of population control; Chinese government/Elites have found another method of preventing or slowing the population explosion in China.

  9. China and Russia both have rampant capitalists. One has to have privilege or be approved by the commie govt. It is “convergence” — the communist totalitarian countries get more capitalist over time and we get more fascist like them. Never the Twain shall meet except in the sewer.

  10. But BarkinDog, the pollution thing is chickens coming home to roost. They are in denial and yet some of them see this as achieving what the single child to a family seeks which is a smaller population. The cancer and respiratory illness will kill off a lot of them.

  11. DavidM:

    I knew one of those economic advisers, he was a progressive.

    Also didnt the former party bosses make out pretty well? I would imagine you would have chaos going from a controlled economy to a market economy overnight.

  12. Mike Spindell wrote: “Your memory fails you…”

    I think my memory is fine. Like I said, “The best you can say is that they are moving toward Free Market Capitalism because it is more successful than socialism and communism.” Your post of details supports what I said rather than detracts from it. I don’t see any contradictions.

  13. But they have been given Most favored nation status in our free trade agreements. I do think that means they can do anything they want with the world’s air. Also does it really matter when the Apple factory has to put up suicide nets around their employee dorms so they don’t get any ideas? Be happy on the giant global plantation. Coming to our shores soon.

  14. The people living there are in danger of serious major illnesses, some of which are permanent. People should be moved out of the city until the pollution is cleared out. It is amazing to me how much pollution people will tolerate before they act to avoid it.

  15. rafflaw
    1, October 22, 2013 at 10:51 am
    That is one scary place to live. If China does not begin to tackle the problem, the corporations that it is serving won’t have any workers alive to make their cheap products.
    ==========================================================

    raff

    if you think that’s bad just google “china cancer villages”

  16. “In both countries the market is king and the large corporations run unchecked as long as they pay homage to the autocratic governments.”

    That sounds more like corporatism than capitalism. Capitalism as I think David (and others) understand it would let those large corporations fail, not allow them to buy beneficial legislation or loopholes, not let them run roughshod over “the little people”, or “pay homage” to the government in the form of campaign donations.

    Rand Paul would agree with you that large corporations should not be able to do those things:

    “Federal bailouts reward inefficient and corrupt management, rob taxpayers, hurt smaller and more responsible private firms, exacerbate our budget problems, explode national debt, and destroy our US Dollar. Even more importantly, any bailout of private industry is in direct violation of the constitution. It is a transfer of wealth from those who have earned to those who have squandered.

    The federal government has overstepped its enumerated powers as stipulated in the supreme law of the land.
    Dr. Paul opposes all federal bailouts of private industry. He strongly criticized the $700 billion bank bailout, AIG bailouts, and auto bailouts, as well as the trillions of dollars the Federal Reserve have printed to fund the subsidization of bad business.”
    http://www.thenation.com/article/whos-afraid-rand-paul#

    “the universal struggle against competition [by aspects of both the Left and the Right] promises to produce in the first instance something in many respects even worse, a state of affairs which can satisfy neither planners nor [classical] liberals: a sort of syndicalist or “corporative” organization of industry, in which competition is more or less suppressed but planning is left in the hands of the independent monopolies of the separate industries.”

    p. 89 The Road to Serfdom. by F.A. Hayek

    Big Ag, Big Pharma, Big Insurance, Big Banks, Big… sounds like corporatism is exactly what we have.

  17. “In a global climate system what goes around comes around.”

    Too true, Dredd–like pieces of houses from the tsunami in Japan, etc. Has the pollution in Seattle gone up since that first picture from the US embassy in China was taken? Wouldn’t surprise me in the least if it had. Blech.

  18. I lived in Seoul, South Korea for a few years. Every spring, the country suffered from the “yellow wind”, pollution brought over from China by the jet stream. It also hit Japan, from what other people tell me.

    Pollution levels went through the roof from March to May, and regular warnings went out for children, asthmatics and the elderly to stay indoors. I’m a fit non-smoking healthy adult male, and I suffered at least four throat infections that I can recall, maybe more. The average annual pollution index rating for Seoul is about 80.

    Most of it was caused by China’s toxic mining industry, and now there’s the toxic manufacturing industry on top of that. I can’t imagine how much worse it is now. It was like having an annual Chernobyl cloud coming over the country, except without the radiation. Or maybe that came as well from China’s 17 nuclear power reactors, one never knows.

  19. rafflaw –
    “the corporations that it is serving won’t have any workers alive to make their cheap products.”

    We’re talking about a country with 3000 annual mining deaths, which kills political prisoners on spec for transplant tourists, which spread HIV/AIDS through cities by “blood pooling” and reinjecting it in the population, which destroyed an entire valley and historical monuments to build a dam, which sends gangs of thugs to harass, assault and murder farmers to “acquire” land for city expansion..

    The PRC government sees human lives as disposable, as meat for the machine and for the profit of the few and powerful. I’m sure they have no qualms about “losing” a few hundred million people.

  20. pete and P Smith,
    I get the impression that you think I believe that China is a good place to work and live! Nothing could be farther from the truth.

  21. China is aware of the problem, and will spend $475 Billion by 2015 to clean up their power stations and ramp up solar and wind energy.

    Time To Wake Up: From Asia to Rhode Island

  22. raff

    didn’t think that at all. after the story of the thousands of dead pigs in a river there i looked a bit further into it. factories just dump waste anywhere, even the average person doesn’t believe in paying for waste collection and disposal.

    they may be an industrial giant now, but i don’t think they can sustain it. if you get a chance, look up their cancer zones or the asian brown cloud.

    well worth the read

  23. David, don’t act naive and from your writing skill it is apparent that there is nothing organically wrong with your cognizance. The problem with China is the same problem the US and every other industrial nation faced early in its transition to an industrial society and away from a nearly total agrarian society: no central and effective regulatory structure. A nonexistent or weak, localized regulatory system rife with corruption is what leads to pollution at the levels we see in the article’s pictures, pictures of US cities at the end of the 19 century and early 20th century and the food supply was barely safe.

    This lack of regulation is the Randian dream, the clarion cry of Libertarian and right wing politicians. This is the dream of self described capitalist champions, it always has been and if Rick Perry could have held a coherent thought in his head for more than 30 seconds, would have been enunciated when he ran for President. That mantra goes on today and will go on in the upcoming election campaign and the 2016 campaign and into the future. Unleash the job creators, unshackle our potential, get rid of job-killing regulation! From the way the EPA oppresses our energy producers to the way those titans of virtue and responsibility in the banking industry are stifled by Dodd-Frank regulations need to be removed.

    That’s what Mike is saying and your faux-misunderstanding and deflection is only working on you and people like you that are so ideologically driven that self-contradiction as well as facts don’t mater. The lack of regulation is the hallmark and foundation of the free-market capitalist system you advocate along with a handful of posters here.

    That picture up top, look at it and then check this one out, my city in 1939 with the street lights on during the day due to smog:

    Don’t play dumb, it’s insulting.
    *

    P Smith, right.
    http://www.healthintelasia.com/blood-money-why-blood-transfusions-are-so-dirty-in-china/

  24. “Lol! I think Al Gore needs to spend some time over there and “get their minds right.”
    —————-
    Maybe we could send you and improve air quality in the Midwest

  25. The Dogs have it!
    =================

    Prairie Rose,

    What you and David fail to understand about capitalism is that these manufacturers are not the ones that are failing. It’s easy to say, well, let ’em (magically) go out of business, but they keep chugging along, thanks in part to the lack of any pollution controls. Incidentally, one reason why American car companies are struggling is because they’re competing with some of these very same companies.

    If you’ve been following David posts, you’ll know that he believes govt regulation is an infringement on private property. And, according to “Dr.” Paul, regulation is one reason why American businesses are struggling. During hearings about coal mine safety following several tragic events, Paul said that mine owners should be left free to determine their own standards, and if workers felt unsafe, they could simply move elsewhere to work.

    Milt Friedman had a lot to say about regulation, which he called an imposed cost. He made the point that if someone upstream fouled the water, the solution was to take them to court, so that the economic penalty would be imposed on that particular company for that particular damage. But to impose regulations on industry as a whole would needlessly drive prices up. Why needlessly? Because in his magic kingdom, companies that failed to act responsibly would be discovered and consumers would trade with more conscientious operators. The intellectual dishonesty contained in that magical thinking is a failure to acknowledge that conscience usually comes with a cost. Companies that limit pollution and dispose of their waste properly must charge a higher price for their product than the company that doesn’t. Uncle Miltie’s whole theory rested on more consumption occurring at lower price points. And history has shown that the consumer, by and large, doesn’t care how, or where, a product was made, only that it is the cheapest ( I’m referring to cost; many consumers are content with products of poor quality).

    Frankly, if you’re quoting Hayek, then you mind is more polluted than the Chinese air on a windless day. The solution is not everyone for themselves. That’s what we saw in New Orleans after Katrina.

    O, BTW: “Dr.” Paul literally got his degree from a box of cracker jack. He was exactly who they had in mind when they said, “Send in the clowns”.

  26. Prairie Rose 1, October 22, 2013 at 11:22 pm

    “In a global climate system what goes around comes around.”

    Too true, Dredd –like pieces of houses from the tsunami in Japan, etc. Has the pollution in Seattle gone up since that first picture from the US embassy in China was taken? Wouldn’t surprise me in the least if it had. Blech.
    ==============================
    Yep.

    Another old saying “it is time to pay the piper” comes to mind.

    Our Department of Energy had a motto on its website:

    “Oil is the lifeblood of America’s economy.”

    (The Peak of The Oil Lies – 2). They took it down, but it is preserved in The Wayback Machine.

    Oil will be the death of all of us who live in the Global Climate System on the globe we call the Earth.

    Only the Flat-Earthers will survive.

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  28. lottakatz wrote: “That’s what Mike is saying and your faux-misunderstanding and deflection is only working on you and people like you that are so ideologically driven that self-contradiction as well as facts don’t mater. The lack of regulation is the hallmark and foundation of the free-market capitalist system you advocate along with a handful of posters here. That picture up top, look at it and then check this one out, my city in 1939 with the street lights on during the day due to smog:”

    Facts do matter, but you seem to talk right over them. At the time this photo was taken, there were local ordinances that already regulated the businesses. The problem is that they did not apply the law to smaller businesses and domestic users because they didn’t want to lose votes. So blame democracy maybe? Anyway, this temperature inversion event was the catalyst to convince people of the need to move away from dirty coal.

    Please take notice how all the regulations were local to St. Louis. No federal mandates. Persuasion and education also were used. So ultimately the free market and common sense corrected the situation. Local ordinances were sufficient regulation along with education.

    As I have said many times, I believe regulations are needed. The difference is how much regulation is needed and at what level. I think most of these situations can be handled at the local level, State, county, and local municipalities. Federal govt should be more limited, acting only when necessary for the entire nation. Your example supports my perspective about govt regulation, not your perspective.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1939_St._Louis_smog

  29. I do not know whether it’s just me or if perhaps everybody else encountering problems with your site. It appears like some of the written text on your posts are running off the screen. Can somebody else please provide feedback and let me know if this is happening to them as well? This could be a issue with my browser because I’ve had this happen before. Appreciate it

  30. RTC,
    “Frankly, if you’re quoting Hayek, then you mind is more polluted than the Chinese air on a windless day.”

    Insulting me is not a very effective way to sway me to your point.

    If you disagree with Hayek’s quote refute it.

    The reason I included the Hayek quote is because he addressed the development of corporatism, or what Occupy Wall Street and others call crony capitalism.

    Mike Spindell wrote that the Randian vision end-game would be the ‘cooperation between rapacious corporations and the State.” I responded that his description sounds like corporatism. I did not address any aspect of environmental regulations in my remark; I was responding generally to Mike’s general statement. Also, capitalism does not have to equal laissez-faire capitalism. Hayek supports a moderate degree of regulation, actually.

    I’m curious why you seem to vehemently disagree with the Hayek quote:

    “a sort of syndicalist or “corporative” organization of industry, in which competition is more or less suppressed but planning is left in the hands of the independent monopolies of the separate industries.”

    What do you think of what he calls a “corporative organization of industry”? Is that a fairly accurate description of what we have right now?

    Regarding Rand Paul, I don’t agree with everything he says, but it would be silly to disregard everything just because we are in disagreement on a few points. For example, he is one of the few people in the Senate saying anything in support of civil liberties. I disagree with what he says about coal mine regulations, but I agree with him on his point about bailouts. Do you disagree with him about the bailouts? Should we have bailed out the banks?

    On Milton Friedman I am agnostic. I haven’t read him yet.

  31. Sposób płoną przy użyciu naszych paliw kopalnych owo zero dziwnego , iż co chwila więcej mężczyzn natomiast kobiet
    zwraca się aż do energii słonecznej , w stosunkowo krótkim okresie czasu ,
    więcej aniżeli prawdopodobne , iż będzie tonajbardziej wykorzystywane pierwocina energii.

    Każdego roku werwa słoneczna staje siędużo w wyższym stopniu popularne, kiedy więcej ludzi zacznie go bawić się , jakkolwiek masz zamysł zobaczyć,
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    aż do zasilania owo . W odniesieniu aż do z większym natężeniem przyjazny w celu środowiska
    pojazdów , idziesz do stwierdzenia, że ​​te będą musiały znajdować się włączone a pobierana każdego dnia , żeby spośród nich korzystać .
    Rzecz w tym, co niemiara osób korzysta w tej
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    przedsiębiorstwo energetyczne do ładowania tego typu pojazdów
    , podczas gdy mogą one znajdować się nadzwyczaj prawidłowo wykorzystującmoc słońca
    , ażeby to zdziałać . Jedną spośród największych zalet o użyciu słońca naładować swój samochód, jest to, że nie będziesz opłacać gotówką aż
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