China Smog Documentary Goes Viral With 200 Million Views in 5 Days
Under the Dome, a documentary about China's massive air pollution problem, has been viewed more than 200 million times since it was released last Saturday. It's being hailed as China's "An Inconvenient Truth" and an eye opener for the Chinese public by Ma Jun, the director of the Beijing-based Institute of Public and Environmental Affairs.
The documentary, which has a similar presentation style to An Inconvenient Truth, was made by Chai Jing, an investigative reporter and anchor at state broadcaster China Central Television. Last year, she left her job to take care of her daughter, who was successfully treated for a benign tumor.
In the 104-minute film, Chai describes how difficult it has been to tell her daughter she can't play outside. "In Beijing in 2014, I could only take her out when the air was good," she says during a presentation to a studio audience, which appears in the documentary. "There were 175 polluted days last year. That means that for half of the year, I had no choice but to keep her at home, shut in like a prisoner."
Chai used $160,000 of her own money and one year to make the documentary, according to NPR. She investigates the science, economics and politics behind the smog, meeting with local officials and visiting London and Los Angeles to see how those cities have dealt with pollution. Chai admits that until recently, she didn't know the difference between fog and smog.
Ma Jun of the Institute of Public and Environmental Affairs explains to NPR why China's government has not silenced Chai, and China's new environment minister even called to thank her: "One reason such a hard-hitting film, that touched on deeply rooted problems, was allowed to be widely disseminated is its positive direction, which gives people hope and confidence."
Still, much needs to be done. Last year only eight of 74 Chinese cities met the air quality targets—only five more than in 2013, according to NPR.
Watch this documentary that has captivated China:
YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE
- Microfibers: The New Plastic Pollution That Threatens Our Waters ... ›
- What You Can Do to Make Your Clothing Ocean Safe - EcoWatch ›
- Hudson River Dumps 300 Million Microfibers Into Atlantic Ocean Daily ›
EcoWatch Daily Newsletter
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced a rule change on Friday that will allow some coal power plants to ignore a court order to clean up coal ash ponds, which leech toxic materials into soil and groundwater. The rule change will allow some coal ash ponds to stay open for years while others that have no barrier to protect surrounding areas are allowed to stay open indefinitely, according to the AP.
- 10 Ways Andrew Wheeler Has Decimated EPA Protections in Just ... ›
- What a Real Coal Ash Cleanup Looks Like - EcoWatch ›
By Brett Wilkins
With President Donald Trump's re-election very much in doubt, his administration is rushing to ram through regulatory rollbacks that could adversely affect millions of Americans, the environment, and the ability of Joe Biden—should he win—to pursue his agenda or even undo the damage done over the past four years.
<div id="04704" class="rm-shortcode" data-rm-shortcode-id="89d490c741c2b7d2f95200298145c69b"><blockquote class="twitter-tweet twitter-custom-tweet" data-twitter-tweet-id="1317147432002703361" data-partner="rebelmouse"><div style="margin:1em 0">JUST POSTED: Facing the prospect that President Trump could lose his re-election bid, his cabinet is scrambling to… https://t.co/hy6L5aOtdv</div> — Eric Lipton (@Eric Lipton)<a href="https://twitter.com/EricLiptonNYT/statuses/1317147432002703361">1602867393.0</a></blockquote></div>
<div id="4f924" class="rm-shortcode" data-rm-shortcode-id="189304aaf1a15ae9bfdda6698bfb975b"><blockquote class="twitter-tweet twitter-custom-tweet" data-twitter-tweet-id="1317167529362599938" data-partner="rebelmouse"><div style="margin:1em 0">I think people underestimate the amount of time and energy that is going to be needed just to climb out from under… https://t.co/FxEMRcMv1E</div> — Matthew Gertz (@Matthew Gertz)<a href="https://twitter.com/MattGertz/statuses/1317167529362599938">1602872185.0</a></blockquote></div><p>Many of the changes reflect the agendas of the powerful corporate and other business interests whose key players have donated generously to Trump, belying the president's oft-repeated claim that he is "draining the swamp." Other regulator rollbacks come despite <a href="https://www.washingtonpost.com/climate-solutions/epas-scientific-advisers-warn-its-regulatory-rollbacks-clash-with-established-science/2019/12/31/a1994f5a-227b-11ea-a153-dce4b94e4249_story.html" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">warnings</a> from career officials within federal agencies about the harm they could cause. </p>
<div id="2e10f" class="rm-shortcode" data-rm-shortcode-id="f42c16794ddc25dcf8bf54a443854416"><blockquote class="twitter-tweet twitter-custom-tweet" data-twitter-tweet-id="1212091176091869184" data-partner="rebelmouse"><div style="margin:1em 0">EPA’s scientific advisers warn its regulatory rollbacks clash with established science https://t.co/RBdUsNvNEy</div> — Carl Zimmer (@Carl Zimmer)<a href="https://twitter.com/carlzimmer/statuses/1212091176091869184">1577820030.0</a></blockquote></div><p>Alarmed by the administration's rushed rate of regulatory rollbacks, a group of over 15 Democratic senators earlier this month sent a letter to Labor Secretary Eugene Scalia warning of "profound economic implications" for some 143 million U.S. workers that would result from curtailing public comment periods for the <a href="https://www.dol.gov/agencies/whd/flsa/2020-independent-contractor-nprm" target="_blank">proposed rule change</a> regarding independent contractors.</p><p>"Workers across the country deserve a chance to fully examine and properly respond to these potentially radical changes, and a 30-day comment period is not nearly enough," the letter states. </p>
- Trump's Hand-Picked Scientists Rebuke EPA Rollbacks - EcoWatch ›
- Trump Announces Final Rollback of Law That Gives Communities a ... ›
- New Report Details Dozens of Trump Rollbacks During Pandemic ... ›
New York is finally bagging plastic bags.
The statewide ban on the highly polluting items actually went into effect March 1. But enforcement, which was supposed to start a month later, was delayed by the one-two punch of a lawsuit and the coronavirus pandemic, NY1 reported. Now, more than six months later, enforcement is set to begin Monday.
- Plastic Bag Bans Put on Hold Amid Coronavirus Fears - EcoWatch ›
- New York's Plastic Bag Ban Begins - EcoWatch ›
- New York Becomes Second State to Ban Plastic Bags ›
Nobody should have to live with pain. Since many prescription painkillers are both addictive and dangerous, more people are turning to CBD as a natural means of relief. If you're new to CBD, our guide to the best CBD oils for pain will help you find the brand that's right for you.