Emission controls versus meteorological conditions in determining aerosol concentrations in Beijing during the 2008 Olympic Games (15 page pdf, Y. Gao, X. Liu, C. Zhao, and M. Zhang, Atmos. Chem. Phys., Dec. 28, 2011)
Also discussed here: Weather Deserves Medal for Clean Air During 2008 Olympics (Science Daily, Dec. 28, 2011)
And here: Impact of Changes in Transportation and Commuting Behaviors During the 1996 Summer Olympic Games in Atlanta on Air Quality and Childhood Asthma (9 page pdf, Michael S. Friedman, Kenneth E. Powell, Lori Hutwagner, LeRoy M. Graham,W. Gerald Teague, Journal American Medical Association, Feb. 21, 2001)
Credit for the surprisingly good air quality at the 2008 Beijing Olympics has been given to the Chinese government for various steps taken to reduce pollution sources, especially vehicle emissions, during and before the games- as they had been, with equally good health results, at the Atlanta, USA Games in 1996. A more detailed analysis of the added effect of meteorology, summarized in the article under review, shows that favourable winds and well-timed rainfall had at least as much to do with the results. The lesson to be learned from this, especially for those cities with unhealthy air, with or without Olympic fever, is that major reductions in pollution and improvements in health are possible with enough government will to engage public support.
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