How many Chinese cities unlivable?

13:34, March 26, 2010      

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Although the road visibility of Guangzhou reached 6 kilometers on Monday and did not meet the criteria for giving early warning signals of haze, the Air Quality Index (AQI) was 114, level III, according to the China Youth Daily on Friday.

It means the city has been slighted polluted. Slight irritations may occur and individuals with breathing or heart problems should reduce outdoor exercise, according to Wikipedia.

Official from Guangdong Provincial Environmental Protection Office said Guanzhou's AQI is not livable for people.

Besides Guangzhou, one of China's mega cities, how many Chinese cities are not livable? It was said before among the world's cities not livable, Chinese cities accounted for more than three fourths.

Among the world's top ten most polluted cities released by the World Health Organization (WHO) in 1998, China accounted for 8. Among the 140 livable cities, issued by the Economist in 2009, none of Asian and African cities were listed at the top ten.

Despite multiple levels to measure a city whether it is livable or not, the environment is most important index. Guangzhou is regarded as an unlivable city due to the serious pollution, which is not resulted from sandstorms, but haze.

Haze is traditionally an atmospheric phenomenon where dust, smoke and other dry particles obscure the clarity of the sky, according to Wikipedia. Industrial pollution and auto exhaust can result in dense haze, which is known as smog.

Guangzhou experienced 14 hazy days in 2009 and the pollutants were mainly from the city itself.

Experts estimated haze is one of the important factors resulted in irritations and respiratory diseases. Furthermore, lung cancer is also related with haze.

Besides Guangdong province, many Chinese provinces and cities also suffer from haze, including southwestern China's Fujian, Zhejiang, Jiangsu provinces, Shenzhen, Hongkong cities and western China's Lanzhou, Xi'an cities.Even China's metropolitan cities, including Beijimg, Tianjin and Shanghai also can not escape, according to China Youth Daily on Friday.

People cannot help asking if China's rapid growth is necessarily at the expense of human health and the cost of the lives. If the pollution can not be effectively controlled, where can people live in the future.

By People's Daily Online
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