Beijing Bans 5 Million Cars On Alternating Days, Sees Clear Skies For First Time In Ages

Published 9 years ago

Having clear skies over Beijing is a simple matter of grounding 2.5 millions cars. That’s how China ahieved blue skies in time for a military parade commemorating the 70th anniversary of victory over Japan in WWII. For two weeks, factories in the region had to cut down their emissions. Meanwhile, the city would ground half of the cars, totaling in about 5 million, on alternating days. The result? Clear skies, and air quality index reached a level 17 out of 500, considered a very good result worldwide.

Unfortunately, restrictions ended that same day, and Friday the 4th was marked with gray skies and a the air quality index reached 160 (considered “unhealthy for sensitive groups” in the US). “The Military Parade Blue went away in a snap — it feels like such a mystery, like making magic,” wrote on Chinese internet user. “Military Parade Blue” is the satirical name for the phenomenon, and it harkens back to “APEC Blue” that Beijing had last Autumn.

(h/t: boredpanda)

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5 million cars were forced to drive on alternating days in Beijing, and factories had to restrict emission for two weeks



Image source:  Steven J.

Without the smog, buildings far in the distance could be finally seen


Image source: Steven J.

Beijing’s average levels of PM (particulate matter) dropped by 73.2% compared to the last year due to the ban


Image source:  Steven J.

40,000 construction sites in and around Beijing also shut down for the duration


Image source:  Steven J.

Air quality index, an international standard of measuring pollution, clocked in at 17 out of 500, signifying very healthy air


Image source:  Steven J.

This is how the Great Wall looks without smog


Image source:  Steven J.


Image source:  Steven J.

Martynas Klimas

Writes like a mad dervish, rolls to dodge responsibility, might have bitten the Moon once.

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