air quality in beijing is measured by two scales. an american scale and a chinese one.
this difference of opinion begins at the size of the particulate matter in the air, that ought to be 'worth counting'. but it ends at the understanding of what is or is not considered to be harmful. for instance this image was taken on a day when the readings were either in the 700 range or the 900 range depending which scale you refer to. (+500 is considered harmful)
china outed a remarkable admission this year, accepting the argument that it should address a pollution problem; an outcome of it's remarkable economic progress.
prior to january - to be politically correct - the atmospheric conditions visible in this scene could only be referred to as 'the fog', and nothing else..
but now an innovation in china's communications with the world will allow for the pollution to be described as a problem the party administration is dedicating millions to eradicate.