The Chinese have been heralding their ability to change the weather with hundreds of rockets and artillery pieces positioned Beijing. However, when it comes to pollution, nothing is quite a effective as an old-fashioned Chinese technique: when forecasters identify the “mist” as pollution and not a natural weather cycle — shutdown access to their site and change forecasters.
Cambridge Environmental Research Consultants has been working on a project funded by the European Space Agency (ESA). Their work has made the Chinese uncomfortable despite a pledge to work with them. After drastic measures have been taken to reduce pollution, the level of pollution remains dangerously high. To make matters worse, the forecasters made their data available in an easy to understand color-coded map on each district. Anyone could access the site until the map conflicted with government claims, including the insistence that the pollution was harmless mist. The government then required a password for access. This came after the team showed on the same day of the opening ceremony that the air pollution index (API) of 101-150 as already dangerously high. Even the government put the figure at 95.
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