Free Essay

Ib Sl Geography – Urban Environments Case Study: Air Pollution in Beijing

In: Social Issues

Submitted By chinkyfrog
Words 804
Pages 4
IB SL Geography – Urban Environments
Case Study: Air Pollution in Beijing

1. What evidence is there that Chinese cities in general suffer from air pollution?

Due to Chinas recent exponential economic growth, pollution has been put to one side and has not been a priority in most cases. Air pollution, a negative externality of economic growth, in China’s northern cities exceed the standards of the World Health Organisation by 5 or 6 times.
Respiratory disease, often a result of soot-clogged lungs, is the leading cause of death in China, accounting for 26 per cent of all deaths. Compared to the United States this mortality rate is 5 ½ times worse. A study showed that particles in the Chinese air cause 915,000 premature deaths each year, including those of 300,000 children who die from lung infections. Another 600,000 adults die early of some sort of respiratory blockage and 15,000 fall victim to lung cancer caused by bad, polluted air.

2. Identify the main source of air pollution in Beijing.

The main source of air pollution in Beijing, and in most Chinese cities, is the burning of coal. Coal is the main fossil fuel used for heating, cooking and for industry. China has large reserves of coal, however most of it is of very poor quality, and containing large amounts of sulphur. Over 60% of Beijing's total energy consumption is coal, representing just over 30 million tonnes per annum. Of this total use of coal, 70% of it is consumed by the manufacturing industry, 20% of it consumed by domestic households and the last 10% by other activities such as transport and shops.

3. What is the “heating season” in Beijing, and why is it significant?

The use of coal is highly seasonal in Beijing. Heating is strictly regulated and all heaters are turned on at the beginning of winter on the same date and all are turned off with the arrival of spring. During the “heating season” (when all heaters are turned on, during winter) the average daily consumption of coal rises by 30% above average. Over 1 million small coal pellet stoves and almost 8,000 heating furnaces add pollutants into the atmosphere every winter.
One of the by products of burning coal apart from soot is sulphur dioxide (SO2) and during the “heating season” small stoves and central heating account for 48% of Beijing’s lower atmosphere sulphur dioxide. According to figure 11.127 there is a dramatic increase in sulphur dioxide during the “heating season”. During the “non-heating season” most of the city is covered by 0.50 or less SO3mg/dm2 except for the inner city and the western suburbs where the concentrations are higher at 1+ SO3mg/dm2. Mainly due to the high concentrations of heavy manufacturing industries in the area. On the other hand, during the “heating season” we can see a huge increase in sulphur dioxide levels. According to figure 11.127 SO3mg/dm2 levels are above 3.0 in some areas, with the highest concentrations all located within the inner city/suburbs where most of the population live.

4. What can be done realistically in Beijing to reduce air pollution arising from (a) burning coal, (b) dust, and (c) car exhausts?

The use of better quality coal will mean fewer pollutants will be released when burnt, thus reducing air pollution. The government should encourage people to replace their coal stoves with gas appliances especially for heating during the winter months (heating season). The government could do this by giving subsidies to gas appliances firms or taxing coal-burning appliances. In order to reduce air pollution arising from dust, plants and/or trees should be planted on the outskirts of the city (especially to the north-west where most dust originates from) to act as a natural wind barrier. This will hopefully filter some of the wind and separate the dust and also cause the dust to settle before

reaching the main residential areas. In terms of reducing air pollution from car exhausts, one of the things that could be done is a government policy whereby all idling engines must be turned off or else a fine will be imposed. The government could also impose a tariff to get into the CBD of Beijing as in London today. This will be a huge disincentive to enter the city by vehicle. In addition to this, the government could subsidise public transport and invest more in transports such as underground railways, public buses, cycling routes and even pedestrian areas etc. Anything to further encourage other methods of transport that are more environmentally friendly than the car.
Ultimately, I feel that by increasing awareness of the threats posed by air pollution will lead to a cleaner future as people are more conscious of their actions.

Similar Documents

Premium Essay

Dictionary of Travel, Tourism, and Hospitality

...students on our business and operational management programmes.’ Hotel & Catering Training Company Preface ‘When I use a word’, Humpty Dumpty said in a rather scornful tone, ‘it means just what I choose it to mean – neither more nor less.’ ‘The question is’, said Alice, ‘whether you can make words mean different things.’ ‘The question is’, said Humpty Dumpty, ‘which is to be the master – that’s all.’ Lewis Carroll, Alice in Wonderland Of the three broad related fields covered by this volume, travel is the most common activity for most people. It includes any journey from one place to another, over short or long distances; to, from and as part of one’s work, during leisure and for any purpose; using any mode of transport by air, land or sea. Those who travel are tourists, but also commuters, diplomats, migrants, nomads, refugees, as well as other travellers. All tourism includes some travel but not all travel is tourism. For most people tourism has a connotation of leisure travel and tends to be synonymous with holidays (vacations). This is also reflected in dictionaries, which commonly refer to tourism as travel for pleasure. By contrast, tourist boards and others concerned with the development, marketing and coordination of tourism in their countries tend to take a broader view; for them tourism means travel for most purposes, with such exceptions as travel to work, to migrate and as part of local and neighbourhood activities. Between......

Words: 133754 - Pages: 536

Free Essay

India-Usa Relationship

...for Asian Studies, Kolkata). I am thankful to Dr. Swagata Ghosh (Department of Political Science, City College, Kolkata). I am also thankful to my colleagues, especially to Dr. Sudipta Chakraborty, Prof. Bimalendu Ghosh, Prof. Kalyan Kumar Sarkar, Prof. Piyal Bhattacharya and Prof. Partha Roy of Kanchrapara College, 24 Pgs (N), who inspired me in various way. I am thankful to my friend Sri Arup Bhattacharya, Sudipta Banerjee and Arindam Dutta. Last but least I am thankful to my parents (Manik Nandy and Biva Nandy), my sister (Bulbul) and my wife (Jayasree) without their inspiration I could not be able to achieve this point in my life. I am thankful to my all of teachers in Department of Political Science (The University of Burdwan) who inspired for my work. I am deeply grateful to Department of International Relations, Jadavpur University, Kolkata which helped me in many ways. During my research work I have used several libraries. For example The National Library, Kolkata, The Ramkrishna Mission Cultural Center’s Library, Kolkata, American Center’s Library, Kolkata, British Council Library, Kolkata, State Central Library, Kolkata, Central Library of The University of Burdwan, Golapbag, Jadavpur University Central Library, Departmental, Library, The Library of Centre for Strategic Studies, J.U., Taraknath Das Research Centre, J.U.. I also thankful to Centre for Studies in Social Science Library, Kolkata, Maulana Abul Kalam Azad Institute of Asian Studies,......

Words: 72424 - Pages: 290

Premium Essay

Infosys Ar

...Infosys today, we can see that it has been a year of great transition for the company. Our full-year performance was average. There were hard-fought battles in a difficult climate, one in which clients’ expectations are changing, new emerging technologies are rapidly coming to market and where the landscape of services companies has become vastly more competitive. We also faced our own internal issues 2 | Letter to the stakeholder When we look at Infosys today, we can see that it has been a year of great transition for the company leading to lagging growth while high attrition rates and the departures of many key executives put tremendous pressure on our business and on performance. We were learning to work in a new environment and in new ways, and it has been a difficult learning experience. But, with learning comes the promise of renewing ourselves and the opportunity to pursue entirely new horizons. As I look over the last year, I already see many promising signs for the future. For the year ended March 31, 2015, consolidated revenues were ` 53,319 crore, which is a year-on-year growth of 6.4%. In U.S. dollar terms, consolidated revenues were US $8,711 million, which is a year-on-year growth of 5.6%. We saw significant cross-currency movements during the year, and our revenues grew by 7.1% in constant currency. Our focus on operational improvements led to an increase in offshore effort mix from 69.4% in fiscal 2014 to 71.2% in fiscal......

Words: 136409 - Pages: 546

Free Essay


...Ahriman/M AI Aida/M Aidan/M aided/U aide/MS aider/M AIDS aid/ZGDRS Aigneis/M aigrette/SM Aiken/M Aila/M Ailbert/M Ailee/M Aileen/M Aile/M Ailene/M aileron/MS Ailey/M Ailina/M Aili/SM ail/LSDG ailment/SM Ailsun/M Ailyn/M Aimee/M Aime/M aimer/M Aimil/M aimlessness/MS aimless/YP aim/ZSGDR Aindrea/M Ainslee/M Ainsley/M Ainslie/M ain't Ainu/M airbag/MS airbase/S airborne airbrush/SDMG Airbus/M airbus/SM aircraft/MS aircrew/M airdrop/MS airdropped airdropping Airedale/SM Aires airfare/S airfield/MS airflow/SM airfoil/MS airframe/MS airfreight/SGD airhead/MS airily airiness/MS airing/M airlessness/S airless/P airlift/MDSG airliner/M airline/SRMZ airlock/MS airmail/DSG airman/M airmass air/MDRTZGJS airmen airpark airplane/SM airplay/S airport/MS airship/MS airsickness/SM airsick/P airspace/SM airspeed/SM airstrip/MS airtightness/M airtight/P airtime airwaves airway/SM airworthiness/SM airworthy/PTR airy/PRT Aisha/M aisle/DSGM aitch/MS ajar Ajax/M Ajay/M AK aka Akbar/M Akihito/M akimbo Akim/M akin Akita/M Akkad/M Akron/M Aksel/M AL Alabama/M Alabaman/S Alabamian/MS alabaster/MS alack/S alacrity/SM Aladdin/M Alaine/M Alain/M Alair/M Alameda/M Alamogordo/M Alamo/SM ala/MS Ala/MS Alanah/M Alana/M Aland/M Alane/M alanine/M Alan/M Alanna/M Alano/M Alanson/M Alard/M Alaric/M Alar/M alarming/Y alarmist/MS alarm/SDG Alasdair/M Alaska/M Alaskan/S alas/S ......

Words: 113589 - Pages: 455