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Beijing Air Quality Forecast

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Oct 18th, 2014, 08:39 AM
  #1
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Beijing Air Quality Forecast

I have a work trip to Shanghai and I wasted to swing by Beijing for 2-3 days prior to getting to Shanghai for a week. I am seeing that the Air Quality index is in the "absurd" category and am rethinking this idea. I can't seem to find a forecast for air quality anywhere. All I see is current index and I would love to see if it will be get better in about a week. If it won't, I will skip Beijing..but if the air will be back in the "somewhat normal" category, I would definitely love to experience the city. Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Tnx
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Oct 18th, 2014, 12:00 PM
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You know, you could assume that the sir quality in Beijing was "absurd" for any given day and you'd only be wrong occasionally.
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Oct 18th, 2014, 01:37 PM
  #3
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You can find recent averages in an article linked into this thread by temppeternh on Jul 8, 2014:
http://www.fodors.com/community/asia...m#last-comment
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Oct 19th, 2014, 10:34 AM
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I think kja must mean this link:

http://blogs.wsj.com/chinarealtime/2...d=blog_flyover

There's no month in which the average pm2.5 count isn't more than triple the safe limit. There's no way of forecasting what it will be like in any three-day period in the future. It depends on wind, on whether some big Party meeting is going on (although those are predictable), whether Olympic officials are in town (in both cases factories are shut down and extra measures taken against the number of cars on the road), on whether there's a national holiday (general reduction of factory activity, fewer cars on road), etc. For what's going on currently, see this site:

http://twitter.com/beijingair

And note this:

http://www.foxnews.com/world/2014/10...rom-pollution/

But all you need to do is to take a few N95 masks and wear them. These are cheap, light, easily obtained before you leave home, and provide adequate protection whatever the level of smog.

It's better to have seen Beijing through grey air than not to have seen it at all, and you might get lucky, especially in autumn or spring, and get enough wind that produces a blue sky without bringing in a sandstorm from the northwest, as occasionally happens in spring.
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Oct 20th, 2014, 08:22 PM
  #5
 
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It is like the weather except less predictable.
I lived in Beijng for a few years and never bothered with a mask. I actually don't know anybody personally (Chinese or expat) who ever wore one. But if you have respiratory issues then act accordingly.
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Oct 20th, 2014, 08:49 PM
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> I lived in Beijng for a few years and never bothered with a mask.

"When I lived in Beijing wasn't right now. If it was recently the fact that I chose not to wear a mask proves I'm right and all the medical advice, and the myriad reports of sore lungs are completely wrong."

> I actually don't know anybody personally (Chinese or expat) who ever wore one.

"And, of course, that makes the medical advice all wrong, too, the truth of a situation being a matter of majority vote. And anyway I couldn't see the many people on the street who actually do wear one, the China expat websites given over to testing and discussing the best masks and how to obtain them, and I haven't read about schools that enclose their outdoor play areas in giant inflatables, or all the other widespread coverage including the links given above my posting. And I haven't been told here once before that there are an estimated one million excess deaths in China every year due to atmospheric pollution, challenged that because I couldn't be bothered to look for myself, and been given a link. Apparently I care about nothing except parading my own Old China Hand qualifications, but take my advice: if enough of us say the pollution isn't harmful, then it isn't."

> But if you have respiratory issues then act accordingly.

The WHO (obviously to be ignored, however) gives a safe maximum for pm2.5s of an average of 25 on the scale over a month. That doesn't stop it from being undesirable to breath 5, 10, or even 20 times that much over a shorter period. These are levels which, in the developed world, would bring urgent government warnings to stay indoors.

So listen to medical advice and take a mask or two in case of need. Or follow advice along the lines of, "I didn't take malaria tablets in the Colombian jungle and I was just fine," kind.
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Jan 22nd, 2015, 11:17 PM
  #8
kja
 
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Haunting indeed. Thanks, Peter!
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Apr 2nd, 2015, 03:20 PM
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http://www.thebeijinger.com/blog/201...ings-pollution

Of course, neither China Daily nor the Ministry of Economic Planning are in any way reliable sources. After all they claimed it was just fog to start with, and other sources make a ring of factories in Hebei the main source. Of course, many of these have supposedly been shut down but in fact run at night, and the government doesn't actually want to tackle them. But note the admission (in fact it was probably worse, therefore) that for 156 days out of 365 last year Beijing suffered from 'severe' pollution. 'Severe' under the Chinese definition, is a rather higher level of pollution than the rest of the world calls 'severe'. 156 days (42%) is therefore probably a very conservative figure.
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Apr 2nd, 2015, 05:19 PM
  #10
kja
 
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I am SO glad I saw Beijing before the solution got so bad! Heartbreaking.... Thanks for the info, Peter!
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