Like the foggy weather in Seattle, Beijing is experiencing the even heavier smog all over the city. The smog has been too thick to barely make objects visible more than 200 feet. Not only it is a burden to Beijing residents’ eyesight, it is a hazard to people’s respiratory system. Such environment issues have greatly impacted everyone’s lives. Needless to say, the pollution needs government action.

Like the foggy weather in Seattle, Beijing is experiencing the even heavier smog all over the city. The smog has been too thick to barely make objects visible more than 200 feet. Not only it is a burden to Beijing residents’ eyesight, it is a hazard to people’s respiratory system. Such environment issues have greatly impacted everyone’s lives. Needless to say, the pollution needs government action.

The hazardous smog has struck the city four times in a month. The conditions have deteriorated enough that people were instructed to stay indoors instead of going outside, further straining Beijing residents’ physical health and mental health.

Some experts claim the damage done by air pollution is as severe as deadly air-borne diseases, such as flu and SARS. The knotty problem is the victims of flu or SARS could be isolated and observed in order to figure out the cure and remedy; nevertheless, there is no way to quarantine the widespread air pollution contaminating the Northern part of China. Everyone is affected.

Beijing is the capital of China. It is endowed with investment funds and national resources. Thousands of Chinese citizens dream of immigrating to Beijing from other cities. Supposedly, people in Beijing should have a better quality of lives. Perhaps to their surprise, they are suffering and suffocated by the industrial smog.

Chances are when it comes to policy-making, the environmental issues are always less sexy than economic growth or national development. Entrepreneurs usually have great lobbying power to get what they want in the political arena, which could conflict with environmental protection. In this case, their demands of economic growth align with China’s national interest. Therefore, issues other than economy often have sacrificed in the long term.

Smog at regional scale is not generated overnight. Likewise, the smog cannot be removed overnight. There is no way people in Beijing will have a better quality of lives if the environment issue continues to be ignored. Policy makers should no longer take air for granted.


Emily Hsu holds a Master Degree in Political Science from University of California, Santa Barbara. She is interested in interaction between nations, organizations, and people within the political arena.

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here