Hong Kong Marathon just held – and led to some bad publicity for Hong Kong, highlighting local air pollution.
By no means first time air pollution here has been focus of media attention; still, can but hope it will help nudge authorities towards more action, less talk.
Excerpts from Reuters item, here on Boston Globe site:
A record 40,000 people took part in Sunday’s Standard Chartered Hong Kong Marathon and many complained of the thick smog which obscured the Tsing Ma Bridge, a key landmark along the route.
Of the two runners who were critically ill, one collapsed near the finish in Wanchai, an area where the air pollution index (API) soared to nearly 150, the highest level since September 2005. The other collapsed not far from the Tsing Ma Bridge.
… an expert in Hong Kong urged people not to underestimate the effects of bad air during strenuous exercise.
“Pollution may have been the cause because of the high level of suspended particulates. For people with a history of asthma, polluted air can cause tightness in the chest,” said medical doctor Lo Winglok.
“It is not surprising at all that these people could suffer from cardiac or respiratory related problems,” he said.
However, Choi Kin, president of the Hong Kong Medical Association, said the condition of the two men was more likely to be linked to their level of fitness rather than air quality.
Hong Kong’s air quality has deteriorated badly in recent years. On many days of the year, the former British colony handed back to China in 1997 is shrouded in smog and people can hardly see across the famous Victoria Harbour.
Environmentalists blame the air pollution on emissions from vehicles in the territory and factories in southern China.
Just checking air pollution indices – which are being published, and High; even at Tap Mun, out in Tolo Harbour in eastern New Territories: so, seems we’re in regional, Pearl River Delta pollution.
[and govt wants to build major highway from Zhuhai and lots of associated infrastructure…]
Post edited by: martin, at: 2006/02/14 01:18