Poor Chinese government! Country’s pollution is interfering with its ability to spy on its own people

In their haste to grow and develop, China has become the most polluted country in the world.

The skies around its cities are gray/brown. The people choke on toxic poisons in the air. And children fall ill.

And with all that, the Chinese government has done little to resolve the problem. In fact, they complained of “interference in internal affairs” when the U.S. embassy began posting the results of its own air-quality monitors on the embassy roof. (Seems the US numbers were significantly higher than the official Chinese numbers.)


The land is contaminated with heavy metals as factories pour off their waste directly into farm land and water supplies.

But maybe now the central government may do something about the pollution.

Seems all those contaminants in the air are limiting the ability of the security forces to monitor the people.

China discovers that pollution makes it really hard to spy on people

[I]nfrared imaging, which can usually help cameras penetrate fog or even smoke, can’t see through the thicket of particulate matter in Chinese air.

This is a big worry for the Chinese government, which as of January 2013, had installed some 20 million cameras on streets, public parks and even in elevators throughout China.

Of course most of the pollution is caused by factories violating Chinese law on emissions . And how do the factories get away with it? Obviously through that tried and true method of little red envelopes being passed under the table to the government inspectors. (Reminds me of my years in Mexico City in the mid-1980s. Every factory was “in compliance” but it was still difficult to see any details of building just across the street thanks to the high pollution levels.)

It would be interesting to see if this story makes it into the Chinese media.

Oh, and in case anyone is wondering why a US news outlet would be interested, the pollution that is affecting the Chinese people is also making its way to the States.

Chinese Pollution Reaches U.S. (CBS News) (And this is from 2007!)


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Filed under Censorship, China, Corruption, Story Ideas

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