Beijingers have been breathing easy this winter thanks to the capital’s efforts to clean up its smog problem. But the battle hasn't been won yet. Beijing was issued its first major smog warning of the winter. An orange alert – the second-highest in the four-tier system – was announced on Thursday and heavy smog is expected to last until Wednesday January 17, Xinhua reports.
Areas of Beijing, Tianjin, Hebei, Shanxi and Shandong will all experience heavy pollution during this period. According to the Ministry of Environmental Protection, the smog will be at its worst on Monday.
An orange alert is issued when the AQI is predicted to be above 200 for three consecutive days, with one of those days being over 300.
PM2.5 levels are expected to exceed 250 micrograms per cubic meter through Monday. Conditions will improve on Tuesday. However, heavy smog is expected to return on Wednesday. A cold front will arrive on Thursday to help disperse the pollution.
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