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Amber Skies in Nanjing

June 10, 2012

Nanjing Sky, June 10, 2012.


It’s a commonplace of discussions about China that air quality is horrendous, and those of us here for long periods usually get tired of reminding everyone about it.  But it bears repeating, if only because China stands for the future in so many ways. If we can’t figure out ways of making China’s air quality better, it does not bode well for the future of the Earth’s environmental safety.  Today we were out of town visiting another part of China, but a Chinese friend sent along this photo from Nanjing taken on June 10 and posted on Weibo (China’s copycat twitter system).  Some of this is the usual terrible smog, but then there’s the added effect of farmers burning off their fields, which adds to the dense pollution that can be seen in the photo  Her comment was that this image struck her as a “vision of the Apocalypse.”  And she recommended, in all seriousness, that we be sure to wear surgical masks upon our arrival back in Nanjing.

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