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July 02, 2008

Air Quality: Initial Impressions

Dawn in Beijing begins around 4:30 this time of year, but without a clear view of the sky, there’s no chance of seeing the sun once it peaks above the soupy horizon. The air quality is actually much worse than I expected. Visibility dropped significantly during our flight’s approach to Beijing yesterday afternoon, and certainly isn’t any better from the ground. Today, the heat is expected to top 98-degrees Fahrenheit, so I’m anxious to see what that means for the air quality.

It’s not terribly difficult to breathe, though the air feels very heavy. I can definitely see how this would be a problem for athletes -- I look forward to day-to-day improvements leading up to 8/08. My airport shuttle drove past the “Bird’s Nest” yesterday afternoon, but the haze made if difficult to capture a clear image. A curves adjustment in Photoshop was needed to cut through the smog.



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You're a good writer, Zach. I look forward to following your time in China on this blog. -RG

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