Lost in the pollution

Lost in the pollution

Thursday, March 20, 2014 - 22:58

I knew that in some cities in the world the pollution is very high, but I never experienced it so clearly as in January this year in Hong Kong. Our perfect skyline view from our apartment was on some days completely blocked by a thick haze.  Most days in that month the app that shows the pollution rate was giving a warning signal of high or very high health risk. During these days we hardly went out, especially not with our one-year-old daughter.

Reason for this high pollution rate is the overproduction of China’s factories just across the border. As Chinese New Year was approaching the factories were producing at a maximum level to ensure there is enough stock for the 2 weeks after when they are closed. This high production leads to high pollution output, which causes the pollution here in Hong Kong. A very serious problem that is difficult to solve as long as China is not undertaking any actions

Unfortunately it seems it is not only the air pollution that is hitting Hong Kong. This week I read the following article titled “Mainland vegetables found to have serious metal contamination” which scared me. What the article highlighted was the fact that vegetables from China have copper levels 15.6 times over international limits, and lead levels that double international limits! Long-term consumption of such vegetables can affect people’s health. Heavy soil contamination in Chinameans that farmers grow crops that even they don’t dare to eat themselves. I often wonder how owners of these farms can sell their products without any guilt. Since most of the HK food comes from China, you have to take a serious effort to avoid it.

Experiencing the pollution in real life now (not even mentioning the pollution in cities like Beijing and Shanghai) I realize more than ever how important it is that serious measures have to be taken!

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