China is one of the most polluted countries in the world. At the beginning of the year the world media took note as many of the northern cities were blanketed in thick, toxic smog. The pollution mostly stems from the vast number of coal power plants that are used to power China’s growing economy, and the lack of emission regulations.
Everyone knows that China’s smog problem is mostly due to the coal power plants; everyone it seems except one Chinese state official, who recently announced at a press conference that the deadly pollution in Beijing is a result of cooking fumes.
Beijing’s Smog in January 2013. (The Guardian)
Quite rightly he was immediately mocked by thousands of bloggers who blame the Chinese government for not addressing the true causes of the pollution which has been getting far worse in recent years.
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The government has tried a variety of plans to reduce pollution in its cities, but none has seemed to work.
Zhao Huimin, the head of Beijing’s Foreign Affairs office, and the official responsible for the remarks, said that the “Chinese people's cooking actually makes no small contribution to PM2.5” (any particles smaller than 2.5 micrometres, that cause air pollution, and pose a serious threat to health).
After blaming pollution on cooking, Zhao then said that he hopes “residents can do more to cooperate with government efforts to clean the air.”
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Shortly after making the comments, Reuters reports that Chinese bloggers wrote over 150,000 posts on Sina Weibo, a Chinese microblogging site similar to Twitter or Facebook. One user from Beijing asked why the government “did not say that farting also makes no small contribution to PM2.5?”
Local media spoke up to defend Zhoa by stating that a report by the Chinese Academy of Science actually proved that cooking fumes were responsible for as much as 20% of particulate matter found in Beijing’s air.
By. James Burgess of Oilprice.com
James Burgess studied Business Management at the University of Nottingham. He has worked in property development, chartered surveying, marketing, law, and accounts. He has also…