Thanks to the corona virus, air pollution in China is clearing up fast. Are they telling the truth about the severity of the situation?

Thanks to air pollution monitoring satellites put up by NASA and ESA to give us data points for climate change,  we know a lot about who is polluting and when and where. China is by far the biggest air polluter in the world, and no wonder. They consume 47% of the work’s coal for burning, produce half the word’s steel and over half of the world’s concrete, not to mention they still mine and refine over 85% of the world’s rare earth metals, all of which are polluting endeavors.

The NASA and ESA satellites monitor among other things NO2, a toxic gas produced by burning coal, oil and gas, both in manufacturing and transportation.

How is China doing?

Comparing the maps for January and February of this year tells you all you wanted to know, and more:


The corona virus started out in December? in the Hubei province, of which the city of Wuhan is the capital, and the province was quickly quarantined and industrial production and transportation did come to a halt. With its 11 million people it is a major transportation center, and a production center of light manufacturing  , so the change in air pollution between January and February was minimal. But is seems that all manufacturing activity in the rest of of China has stopped, as well as the activities in the mega-cities Beijing, Shanghai and Chongqing.

Obviously China is not telling us the truth about the situation.

This is scary.


Published by


Retired engineer, graduated from Chalmers Technical University a long time ago with a degree in Technical Physics. Career in Aerospace, Analytical Chemistry, computer chip manufacturing and finally adjunct faculty at Pennsylvania State University, taught just one course in Computer Engineering, the Capstone Course.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.