The BBC TV News was quick to claim this should encourage China to ‘move away’ from fossil fuels. They conveniently (for themselves) forgot to mention that gas is also classed as a fossil fuel but does not cause smog, so is a viable option which China will use. The BBC’s implication was that alternatives like renewables would save the day, but ironically the smog itself is only lingering due to lack of wind and is blocking out the sun.
NB the report below is from CBBC (children’s TV) and doesn’t include the ‘spin’.
Parts of China have been covered under a thick blanket of smog for the last four days.The air quality in China can sometimes be so bad, that the government have to give people warnings about the level of pollution in the air.
When the levels are high they can close schools, stop planes taking off, close factories and limit the number of cars on the road.In north and central China, cities like Beijing, are currently under a red alert air pollution warning – the highest level.
Millions of people, especially children and elderly people have been warned to stay indoors when the levels are high.If they do go outside lots of people wear facemasks, to try to filter out the pollution.
What causes the smog?
Coal is used to power some Chinese factories and as it’s winter now, more people are using it to heat their homes.This means that more coal is burnt and this can increase the pollution levels in the air.
The weather can also have an effect on pollution. As there is very little wind at the moment, the pollution is gathering in one area, rather than being blown away. [bold added]
More recent report: China says some factories have violated anti-smog measures | Yahoo News