When China’s leader, Xi Jinping, met with Communist Party delegates from Inner Mongolia last week, he urged them not to relent in the fight to improve the environment.
“We must adhere to the concept that clear waters and green mountains are as good as mountains of gold and silver,” he said.
On Monday, large parts of China experienced just how bad the environment can still be.
The largest and strongest dust storm in a decade swept across northern China, grounding hundreds of flights, closing schools in some cities and casting a ghastly shroud over tens of millions of people — from Xinjiang in the far west across to the Bohai Sea, according to China’s meteorological service.
airpocalypses” that the country routinely experienced a few years ago, forcing crash government efforts to address what had become a political and public health crisis.
air quality significantly, especially around the capital. But this week, three forces — the post-Covid industrial rebound, the continued impact of climate change on the deserts of northern China, and a late winter storm — combined to create a dangerous, suffocating pall.
“Beijing is what an ecological crisis looks like,” Li Shuo, the policy director for Greenpeace China, wrote on Twitter.