You've probably seen news over the past few weeks about the incredible smog that has engulfed the northern city of Harbin. Air pollution is a serious problem everywhere in China, but this particular story hits home for me because I used to live in Harbin. I remember it as a relatively clean city (compared to Beijing at least), but it seems the capital's gray skies have finally headed northward.
The descent of smog on Harbin has also caused a bit of a kerfuffle among my friends there, who (unlike Beijing residents) are not used to dealing with prolonged smog. Now they're scrambling for N95 masks and air filters just like people in Beijing have been for years. It's a sad thing, but it doesn't seem like there's much chance China will resolve this issue anytime soon.