Last Updated: Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Beijing Smog 2015 prompts red alert for first time in history


beijing-smog-after-picture
The traffic in smog in Shijingshan District of Beijing, captial of China (Xinhua/Li Xin)
Beijing's city government issued its first red alert for smog on Tuesday warning severe air pollution would affect the Chinese capital for several days.

According to Xinhua News Agency, Beijing upgraded its alert for air pollution from orange to red, which will last from 7:00 a.m. Tuesday to 12:00 p.m. Thursday.

According to the U.S. Embassy in Beijing, the air quality index stood at 250 Tuesday morning, classed as "very unhealthy" and 10 times higher than the World Health Organization's recommended levels, CNN reported.

According to the city's emergency management headquarters, during a red alert, kindergartens, primary and high schools are advised to suspend classes, outdoor operations of construction sites are banned and some industrial plants are required to limit or stop production.

According to the Beijing Municipal Environmental Monitoring Center, heavy air pollution will linger until Thursday. Smog in Beijing is expected to disperse Thursday afternoon as a cold front arrives.

This is the first time Beijing has issued a red alert for smog since 2013 when Beijing adopted an emergency response program for air pollution.