For China residents not content to judge from the frequency and density of their own coughing, Greenpeace is compiling sources of real-time air quality data across the country and beyond:
With the rise of China’s middle class comes a demand for improved quality of life. So its little wonder air pollution is an ongoing ‘hot topic’ in Mainland China and Hong Kong, and with it how exactly the government is monitoring air pollution. This week Jonathan Watts of the Guardian covered the recent inclusion of tiny particulate matter PM2.5 in the government’s list of air quality indicators, a move sure to gain the approval of environmentalists.
Until now, [PM2.5’s] absence from the national pollution index created an absurd discrepancy between official claims of “blue sky” conditions and the reality of air so putrid and murky it could be tasted. “At present, the public’s feelings about air quality are different from the monitoring data,” environment vice-minister Zhou Jian acknowledged during a speech at a recent forum. “To prevent haze, we will improve the air quality standards as soon as possible and include PM2.5.”
For those living in China, we’ve compiled a list of real-time updated air pollution tracking sites, micro-blogs and apps. They’ll help you closely monitor the skies (and know to stay indoors on those ‘crazy bad’ days) …