Smog levels in 33 Chinese cities reach nine times safe levels

China is enveloped in a massive cloak of smog that was measured on Sunday in Beijing at nine times safe levels, according to an Atlantic Cities report. The huge smog pall that enveloped 33 cities over the weekend, Chinese media reported, is the result of a spate of windless, cold weather.

Medical services have been overwhelmed by people with breathing difficulties, while the Chinese government has instructed the population to stay indoors. America air pollution authorities suggest particles above 100 micrograms per cubic metre are unsafe, but the US Embassy in Beijing measured concentrations as high as 900 micrograms.

A satelite image from the remote reaches of space vididly illustrates the murky smog cloud that is obscuring the huge continent with tiny particles that can inflitrate airways and even lodge permanently in the blood stream. The market for face masks is booming.

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