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Ear to the Ground

Study Blames American Smog on Asia

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Posted on Jan 20, 2010
Flickr / Marcy Reiford

Residents of Southern California are no strangers to smog, but new research suggests that South and East Asia could be to blame for increased levels of the brown stuff floating over the Western United States. Ozone and possibly other pollutants are apparently blowing over the ocean, causing all sorts of problems and reminding us that exporting our pollution to the developing world isn’t exactly working out.  —PZS

Los Angeles Times:

Ozone from Asia is wafting across the Pacific on springtime winds and boosting the amount of the smog-producing chemical found in the skies above the Western United States, researchers said in a study released Wednesday.

The study, published in the journal Nature, probes a phenomenon that has puzzled scientists in the last decade: Ground-level ozone has dropped in cities thanks to tighter pollution controls, but it has risen in rural areas in the Western U.S., where there is little industry or automobile traffic.

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By jacklord66, January 20, 2010 at 10:27 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Mmmmmm…the smell of stir fry floating through my window.

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By Sean01, January 20, 2010 at 5:57 pm Link to this comment

As a guy who lived for a year in industrial China, this article does not surprise me. 

I’ve experienced the blackened snot from breathing their air; I’ve watched how they run their plants at night to avoid the ‘inspections’ during the day; I’ve felt the air palpably warmer in the mornings after their nightly runs.

For anyone who still doesn’t believe that human activity can add to global warming, just hang for a year in industrial China.

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