China: The Human Price of Pollution | Souvid Datta
Every year, China’s pollution causes an estimated 3.5 million deaths.
January saw a fetid smog trap Beijing under pollutants from the region’s 200 coal-fired power plants where concentration levels hit 40 times what the World Health Organization deems safe. Outside China’s urban areas, disease rates in communities near chemical, pharmaceutical or power plants hit five times the national average.
For 30 years, China’s formidable economic expansion has been laced with corruption and negligence. The country’s politics are made up of crafted stability and censorship. Individual voices proclaiming the “human price” of pollution have been lost in the din or explicitly quashed by a wall of denial and intimidation.