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Well, we made it a short two weeks but yesterday marked the first day of 2015 that received a smog warning from the Beijing municipal environment authority, PM2.5 exceeding 200 last night. The pollution has risen even higher today, with PM2.5 currently hovering around the 280 mark (as of 1.30pm) placing the city on yellow alert, or if you follow the US Embassy readings, more of a dark mauve alert, a color that captures the essence of the sky a little better.
A mauve warning, for those interested, means that we can look forward to "Significant aggravation of heart or lung disease and premature mortality in persons with cardiopulmonary disease and the elderly; significant increase in respiratory effects in general population" and that "People with heart or lung disease, older adults, and children should avoid all physical activity outdoors. Everyone else should avoid prolonged or heavy exertion."
The warning is predicted to remain in place until Friday, at which point the world will implode and you'll never have to work again. So there's that. Live it up, Beijing!
Visit the original source and full text: the Beijinger Blog