China pollution anger spills into state media, prompts official transparency
BEIJING (AFP) - Public anger in China at dangerous levels of air pollution, which blanketed Beijing in acrid smog, spread on Monday as state media queried official transparency and the nation's breakneck development.
The media joined Internet users in calling for a re-evaluation of China's modernisation process, which has seen rapid urbanisation and dramatic economic development at the expense of the environment.
Dense smog shrouded large swathes of northern China at the weekend, cutting visibility to 100 metres in some areas and forcing flight cancellations. Reports said dozens of building sites and a car factory in the capital halted work as an anti-pollution measure.
Doctors at two of the city's major hospitals said the number of patients with respiratory problems had increased sharply in the past few days, state media reported.