Residents are Warned of Increased Smog in the Next Few Days
Residents are warned as thick smog is persisting for the next five days in major cities in northeastern China that sees extremely high air pollution readings during the weekend. The national environmental watchdog said that severe pollution is spreading rapidly in the three northeastern provinces namely Jilin, Liaoning and Heilongjiang.
The smog has already affected 10 cities last Friday, then 18 cities by Saturday and 21 cities on Sunday. The concentration of PM2.5 or fine particulates is hazardous to human health, which reached 1,107 micrograms per cubic meter as of 5 pm last Sunday in Shenyang. The national safety level for PM2.5 is at 75 micrograms per cubic meter. The reading went as high as 1,400 microgram per cubic meter in several monitoring sites, which prompted the local government to upgrade its emergency response level to the highest tier Sunday afternoon.
One local resident said that even went wearing a mask, he still experienced sore throat and watery eyes after walking for a few minutes. Concentration of PM2.5 in Jilin, Changchun already reached 860 micrograms per cubic meter 8 am on a Monday and an additional 17 cities in the region were hit by severe air pollution. The deputy director of the China Research Academy of Environmental Science said that the air quality in Beijing may not be affected as northerly winds are blowing in the area and will unlikely bring air pollutants to the capital. Coal consumption also increased to provide heating in homes since November 1.