Reuters reports that a large quantity of pollution from China is blowing across the Pacific ocean on winds known as westerlies, increasing smog, acid rain and other environmental and health problems in the western United States. The bad air takes about six days to reach the U.S.
Dirty emissions include black carbon, which does not wash easily out of the air and remains in the atmosphere for several days to weeks. Black carbon not only contributes to climate change but is also linked to cancer, asthma, emphysema and heart and lung diseases which raises numerous health concerns.
The pollution report by a team of Chinese and American researchers was published by the U.S. National Academy of Sciences. It indicates among other things that sulphate from the burning of fossil fuels in China is responsible for as much as a quarter of sulphate pollution in the western United States at times.
Pollution is also tied to various forms of environmental skin damage.
World and U.S. demand for cheap Chinese-made goods is blamed for much of the massive pollution from China's factories. According to the report, between 17 and 36 percent of various air pollutants in China are related to the production of export goods, with a fifth of that linked to U.S.-China trade.
No word yet on how far the Chinese pollutants make it across the U.S. before dissipating.
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