22 Jul '12, 1pm

When Beijing Cleared the Air

Imagery from satellite data shows normal 2008 carbon dioxide levels in Beijing, left, and the reductions when traffic and industrial emissions were curbed during the Olympics. As carbon monoxide decreased, so did carbon dioxide, a potent greenhouse gas. (Enlarge this image .) As the Olympic Games draw near in London and some fret about the environmental impact, it might be instructive to look back on the measures taken when Beijing played host in 2008. It’s not likely that the organizers in Beijing were thinking about climate change when they ordered large numbers of cars and trucks to stay out of the city before the games began. One suspects that they were more worried about harm to the country’s image, if the world watched athletes struggling to compete while inhaling dirty air. Still, it stands to reason that if you drastically cut the number of vehicles in an urban cen...

Full article: http://green.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/07/22/remembering-bei...

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