A Concern for Olyimpians...
While factors like humidity and altitude play into game plans of athletes, competitors at this Summer's Olympic Games might have another consideration ... pollution.
The New York Times ran a story in their series about China's pollution series specifically about the upcoming games. China has had problems with many environmental concerns from water to garbage, but Jim Yardley's article deals specifically with air pollution, and more specifically, Beijing's air pollution.
China has been at or near the top of many lists dealing with high pollution. As early as 2000, people were starting to pay attention to China's growing problem. When this story originally ran, it spoke of China's plans to cut down on coal use. While China has started to use cleaner-burning coal, the NYT says that coal consumption has not gone down.
It tuns out China's problems are being compounded mostly by its own expansion. It's efforts to counter the growing problem has been negated by its growing industry and population. The country has moved or closed plants that high polluters, which in turn put more cars on the road so that workers could get to their new or relocated jobs.
Measures to cut down on air pollution are being tested, such as only allowing certain amounts of cars on the road on given days. The Chinese government is still working on the problem, and also have thought up emergency actions that can be taken while the games are going on.