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Watch Chinese Air Pollution Work Its Way Around the World in This Scary NASA Animation

New research shows that when it comes to air pollution, what happens in Asia doesn’t stay there for long.

image via (cc) flickr user vtpoly

Baoding, a heavily industrialized city in China’s northeast, has been awarded the dubious honor of having that country’s most polluted air. It’s an impressive, if disheartening, achievement, considering that in 2014 90 percent of Chinese cities failed to meet national air quality standards—ones put in place to combat the growing pollution created during the past thirty years of Chinese industrial growth. But while Baoding’s dirty atmosphere represents a major environmental and health concern for that city’s 11 million residents, climatological research shows that industrial air pollution in China doesn’t stay in China for long. This newly released NASA animation demonstrates how fast and far air pollution, much of it from Asia, flows through the planet’s atmosphere in just a matter of months.

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