Air Quality in China

Often times, when talking about coal burning plants, greenhouse gasses, and air quality, the negative effects on the environment are brought up. While global warming may be a downside to industrialization these gases also have a negative effect on human health. This article from USA Today describes China’s air quality in the past year. The smog in the country creates poor visibility as well as unpleasant smells that are detrimental to country’s citizens.

China has develop rapidly over the past decade. As the country has expanded, more and more factories are being and were built. Although these factories did created jobs and help many people escape poverty they also increased China’s use of fossil fuels. The large number of people living in China affect its air quality as well. There are thousands of cars driving through China everyday that emit harmful gases. Coal burning happens to be another major issue in China. The country burns more coal than any other place in the world. This article from Princeton details how the emissions from these fossil fuels and gases are affecting the people of China.  Many people living in China are developing respiratory infection, lung cancer, and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease from being exposed to unclean air. Children and elderly are especially affected by the poor air quality, many die early because their lungs cannot handle the unclean air.

Although China’s industrialization did provide an opportunity for many to earn an income and support their family it also created an environmental dilemma that is detrimental to human health. The Chinese government is working on reducing their carbon footprint by placing restrictions on coal burning plants and other smog causing facilities. Hopefully – overtime – China will be able to restore the clean air it had before it became industrialized.

http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/world/2014/01/16/china-smog-air-pollution/4504729/
http://www.princeton.edu/~mauzeral/papers/Zhang.Mauzerall.etal.China.Env.Health.Lancet.2010.pdf

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