Though Christmas has ended, some countries are still experiencing snow, and will last until February. Most kids will be out, building snowmen. But not for China. Winter may be tough, people gets the flu. But this will not stop them from getting out there and go on sledding, play snowball fights, and building snowmen. Chinese authorities, however, sternly advise its citizens from doing so. They are even advising to stay indoors.
Beijing’s Meteorological Bureau took to social media to warn its citizens of the harmful effects of snow. This is because “The snow is very dirty!” reports the bureau. The World Health Organization has announced that air-quality index, or AQI, considered safe is at 25.
China’s AQI was at 195 last December. It even reached 470 at one point, reports CNN. To get a better understanding on how dirty China’s air is, a time-lapse video taken by a Beijing-based Briton showed how smog engulfed the city in under 20 minutes.
— Chas Pope (@china_chas) January 2, 2017
This is why building a Snowman in China is a bad idea
WHO reported that the number of PM2.5 particulates per cubic meter in Beijing has reached above 500 micrograms. This is very alarming as the considered safe level is under 25. The jump in the number of particulates is caused by the increase in the use of coal for heating. These particulates makes the snow toxic.
The smog is even reported as deadly as smoking. One research stated that it may be the cause of every 1 in 3 deaths in some areas of the country. The thickness of the smog even caused flights to be cancelled. Last December, an antipollution protest was held in Chengdou, calling for the government to take action.
The Chinese government has promised to face the problem head-on, vowing to spend more than $361 billion for developing renewable energy by 2020. Hopefully, this would lessen the use of coal, even by its big industries. But, until then, no snowmen for Chinese children, even those for the young at heart.
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