Beijing smog level soars, pollution at dangerously high levels

The pollution levels in Chinese capital Beijing is rising dangerously with the city’s air quality diminishing day by day.

Thursday witnessed the season’s first wave of extremely dangerous pollution. The concentration of toxic small particles were more than two dozen times high that the safe level.

Adding to the trouble was the city’s air that had an acrid odor. This forced the commuters to wear industrial strength face masks to protect themselves.


The smog was so thick on Thursday morning that the skyscraper buildings were next to invisible.

“I couldn’t see the tall buildings across the street this morning. The smog is getting worse day-by-day. The pollution levels are so high that I often cough, and my nose is always irritated,” said a traffic coordinator at a busy Beijing intersection.

The city’s air quality is often poor, especially in winter when stagnant weather patterns combine with an increase in coal-burning to exacerbate other forms of pollution and create periods of heavy smog for days at a time.

The early Thursday readings for particles of PM2.5 pollution marked the first ones of the season above 500 micrograms per cubic meter. The density of PM2.5 was about 350 to 500 micrograms on Thursday midmorning. The air started clearing towards the afternoon.