Imagine that whenever you go outside even breathing could be dangerous. In China that nightmare is a reality. In the past year there has been a sharp increase in air pollution. It is important to change the path that China is on becasue it goes against many of the principles and beliefs of Maoism, which stresses the importance of the peasantry, small-scale industry and agriculture.
Artist Liu Bolin walks in smog
On December 19, 2016, more than 70 cities released warnings about pollution reaching dangerous levels. As a result some schools and power plants were forced to close. Despite the danger, it was said that many schools refused to close. In addition, driving restrictions were put in place and hundreds of flights were grouded due to low visibility caused by the intense smog. On January 25, 2017 about 57.8% of cities reported varying amounts of air pollution. Of the 338 cities being monitored, 7.1% reported severe pollution exceeding 300 micrograms per cubic meter of PM 2.5 particles, with 10-25 being considered the safe amount.
A plane flys through the dense smog
The regular routines of thousands of people, businesses, and government organizations were disrupted or completely cancelled, having in some cases large and significant economic consequences. Air pollution is a problem with no short term solution and unfortunately long term exposure can cause cancer or damage to the immune, neurological, reproductive or respiratory systems. Also, in extreme cases it can lead to death.
Women wearing masks on an extremely polluted day, where a red alert was issued
The out of control growth of manufacturing leads to environmental and social consequences. The growth of manufacturing is compromising the values and philosophies of Maoism because it only benefits the wealthy. Even if radical changes and regulations were to be implemented immediately it would take decades to reverse the damage already done. Not only is pollution terrible but it goes against many of the beliefs of ancient China.