Beijing sees return of severe smog
Beijing sees the return of severe air pollution on Thursday, showing the futility of efforts pledged when the Chinese capital grabbed global headlines a year ago with lung-busting smog enshrouding it.
Concentration of PM2.5, the fine particles most harmful to health, at one point on Wednesday night exceeded the 500 mark on the Air Quality Index measured by the US embassy.
By 10am on Thursday, it was hovering in the high 400s, similar levels seen last year.
The US embassy's recommendations for pollution at these levels are to wear masks, avoid outdoor activities and to provide protection to low-resistance groups such as the elderly and children.