South Asia’s Toxic Air

November 23, 2019

Good, brief explainer of the dynamics behind Asia’s poison air crisis.

4 Responses to “South Asia’s Toxic Air”

  1. rhymeswithgoalie Says:

    Back ~1970 my mother got us a board game called “Smog” where players had a quadrant of land with smokestack industries sporting dark plumes of different sizes. Each turn set the wind direction and you moved all the plumes to follow it. You lost points for every grid square that was covered by a plume, whether from your own industry or blown in from a neighbor. You spent money reducing the plume sizes on your own industries. Inevitably people first abated the smog from their interior factories, and the last to be improved were those along the border which only mattered when the wind blew the wrong way.

    Whenever I read a news article about Canada having acid rain from US coal-powered industry or electricity plants, I thought about that game. I still get reminders whenever major air pollutants cross international borders.

  2. dumboldguy Says:

    Ho-Hum! No one seems to care about the air pollution that is having an increasing impact in Indonesia, Bangladesh, India, Pakistan, and China—-five of the ten most populous countries in the world—-their total population is approaching 3.5 billion, almost half of the ~7.5 humans on the planet.

    Maybe it’s because it’s killing off so many of them and likely to get many more in the near future, and anything that reduces human population is good for the planet? Or is it uncaring and cynical to even think such thoughts.

    • rhymeswithgoalie Says:

      Some cities are pushing EVs and/or penalizing combustion vehicles. Those programs restricting even/odd license plate driving days during major smog events don’t apply to EVs.

      India’s current targets are only electric three-wheelers by 2023 and only electric two-wheelers by 2025. Their EV car target is still in flux. (Of course many of those old combustion vehicles will be resold elsewhere, but Indian cities will have less smog.)

      • dumboldguy Says:

        Indian cities will have less smog? Indian cities will also be much hotter and millions of A/C units will be needed to make them survivable—-and much of the electricity for all these new A/C units will be generated with COAL—same goes for EV’s. It’s a good thing humans don’t have tails, or we’d spend half our time chasing them (or are we doing that now, figuratively speaking?).


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