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Beijing pollution reaches dangerous levels

Thursday, March 27, 2014 - 00:33

March 27 - Pollution levels in Beijing climbed to dangerous heights on Thursday (March 27), causing residents to worry about their health. Rough Cut (no reporter narration).

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ROUGH CUT (NO REPORTER NARRATION) STORY: Pollution levels in Beijing climbed to dangerous heights on Thursday (March 27), causing residents to worry about their health. Beijing's official air quality index (AQI), which measures airborne pollutants including particulate matter and sulphur dioxide, peaked to readings of over 400 on Thursday. A level of 300 is considered dangerous while the World Health Organisation recommends a daily level of no more than 20. Beijing's index routinely exceeds 300, and sometimes hits levels above 500. Many Beijing residents took to wearing face masks as pollution levels peaked in the afternoon. Chinese regulators told the country's two largest insurers to stop selling policies against smog, a week after such policies were launched, the state-run English newspaper the China Daily reported on Thursday. The newspaper did not say why the country's insurance watchdog had ordered People's Insurance Company of China (PICC) and Ping An Insurance Group to cease sales. The country's worsening air quality is at the top of the list of concerns of China's leaders, anxious to douse potential unrest as a more affluent urban population turns against a growth-at-all-costs economic model. The smog enveloping Beijing is choked by traffic and surrounded by the big and heavily polluted industrial province of Hebei.

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Beijing pollution reaches dangerous levels

Thursday, March 27, 2014 - 00:33