China Rising: Environment: They Export Pollution Too

Much of the year, the air in Beijing hangs as thick as egg-drop soup. Even the billboards promoting a "green Olympics" in 2008 are covered in grime. And this ancient city, where a traffic policeman's life expectancy hovers around 40 years, is hardly alone. The World Bank calls China home to 16 of the 20 most polluted cities on earth, making the country's blighted environment a cautionary corollary to its economic success. Environmental degradation robs the nation of up to 12% of its GDP, according to the World Bank, and each year 300,000 Chinese die prematurely of respiratory ailments. "The rest...

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