Monday, July 28, 2008

Beijing 2008 - Olympics In The Air

Last October, during the beginning of my time in Beijing, I wrote this blog post that mentioned air quality with two comparative photos.

Since then, I've been following the blog of James Fallows who also has been posting photos for comparison.

In the last several days -- China has done several things to try to improve the air quality for the Olympics.

  • Temporarily shutting down most factories East of Beijing
  • Even-Odd car restrictions

Both of these are huge undertakings. Consensus, so far, is that the measures are not working. That said -- I heard it's supposed to rain soon, and there really hasn't been a decent rain in Beijing since the shut-downs and traffic restrictions.

James Fallows' "Weather" Photos for July

July 2, 2008 East or west, home is best Photo by James Fallows - July 2

July 12, 2008 With 26 days to go Photo by James Fallows - July 12

July 15, 2008 Something familiar, something new Photo by James Fallows - July 15

July 19, 2008 Everything changes tomorrow
Photo by James Fallows - July 19

July 26, 2008 Sunday morning Beijing Photo by James Fallows - July 26

July 27, 2008 Eleven days to go Photo by James Fallows - July 27

So, that's the view in Beijing. It's not really pollution, it's Olympic Spirit In The Air!


  1. I just remembered they had the Olympics in Los Angeles in 1984 -- and I'm sure the smog was pretty bad there, too! I'm sure car emissions were worse back then.


    Gary, do you remember driving to New York, and seeing that sick yellow haze hanging over the city in the morning?

  2. I remember -- but the yellow haze was over New Jersey before we got to New York. I think the garden state was just trying to warn us off!

    Similar to LA ... Beijing has ocean on one side, and mountains on the other. Beijing has a worse feature ... it is in a pocket (armpit, if you will) of mountains.