Pollution solutions

So by now, you must have heard about the airpocalypse that engulfed Beijing (and the rest of northern China) for most of January. Now that it’s well into the second month of the year, I obviously survived! Could I chew the air, as Jon Stewart claimed? I don’t think so. Then again, I don’t notice […]

US v. China: Stormy capitals edition

Remember that derecho that passed through Washington, D.C., last month that left 1.5 million people without power? That was a storm. Rain and winds up to 90 mph, knocked-down trees, caved-in roofs, minor flooding — not saying some of those things couldn’t have been avoided (most of all the week-long power outage), but it’s hurricane-like […]

China update

Exciting time for China right now, with the annual two sessions kicking off today. Here are loosely related tidbits of news, which I hope will form a composite of modern China for you: The National People’s Congress, one of China’s two legislative bodies (i.e., the ones that are meeting right now), is a shining example […]

Pollution: A Western conspiracy?

I’ve spent the better part of this week not believing air quality data provided by one U.S. Embassy, as suggested to me by this Chinese official. From Caijing: “China’s air quality should not be judged from data released by foreign embassies in Beijing,” Du Shaozhong, vice head and spokesman of Beijing’s environmental protection bureau, said […]

Other things China is banning

In an effort to be fair, Gmail/social networking sites aren’t the only thing China targets for bans. Here are other things China has banned in recent days: Luxury advertising (local Beijing policy). Indoor smoking (ban in name only). Illegal additives in pig feed that are toxic to humans (cross your fingers!).

Beijing air goes crazy again

But I’m in Anhui now, so I get a reprieve from “worse than hazardous” pollution. “Hazardous” is the highest level on the US Embassy’s pollution rating system, which goes up to 500. The reading for Sunday afternoon, via @BeijingAir: 02-20-2011; 16:00; PM2.5; 526.0; 500; Beyond Index // Ozone; 3.6; 3; Good That was right after […]


Too busy and too lazy lately, even though I’ve thought of a lot of things to say! So, here’s the short, bulleted version, in chronological order: A modern Chinese wedding. Boyfriend and I went down to Shanghai during the National Day holiday to attend one of his college friend’s wedding. It was interesting, to say […]

More on snow

Last week, I was wondering where the snow was. Shortly after I posted, the snow cometh. And it didn’t stop coming for almost an entire day. And then I learned how awful snow is. Consider: My birthday, last Monday, was probably one of the coldest day on record for Beijing — it was definitely the […]

Things that must not be said

It’s rather obvious, but should you see a sentence with vague implications like this one Environmental protection measures will surely have some impacts on the province’s GDP growth. it means it’s something bad. In this case, the “impact” that environmental protection will have is slowing the GDP growth, but no one in China will (or […]