Why do they always have to rely on pretty girls to convince us to breathe?
Well, it's happened. China is now so polluted that a travel company offered the residents of Zhengzhou, a city of 8 million in north-central China, the chance to sit and enjoy some bagged mountain air from over 120 miles away. Demand for the air was so high that after waiting in lines, residents were limited to just a few minutes of untainted oxygen. In what has to be the most depressing news quote I've read in a long time, one pregnant woman told reporters "I felt my baby move right when I breathed in. I would love to walk in the mountain's forests after my baby is born." Oof.
Zhengzhou is one of China's 10 most polluted cities. Considering China's pollution is so bad that it regularly posts numbers previously thought impossible on the pollution scale developed by the United States back when we thought we had terrible smog, that's saying a lot. To put that into context, yesterday's Air Quality Index in the worst-polluted city in America, Bakersfield, CA, was 45. Zhengzhou's was 158, and yesterday wasn't even a bad day.
Worse? They really do already have canned air over there. Get me off this planet, please.
Now if only they could get the air to be sparkling.
(by Johnny McNulty)