Beijing plans to define smog as disaster under law

Updated: 31 May 2016
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Vehicles run amid heavy smog and thick fog in Beijing. (File photo: China News Service/Jin Shuo)
Beijing plans to draft laws that would define smog as a form of meteorological disaster, providing legal grounds to enact emergency response.
The standing committee of Beijing's People's Congress, the legislature for the capital city, reviewed the draft regulation on prevention and treatment of meteorological disasters on Thursday.
Liu Zhengang, the director of the Office of Legislative Affairs in Beijing, said weather disasters have caused economic loss equal to 1 to 3 percent of GDP.
Beijing is a region with a higher frequency of weather hazards including rainstorms, cold fronts, sandstorms, hail and smog, he said.
From 2001 to 2014, meteorological disasters killed 111 people here and led to a direct economic loss of 22.5 billion yuan ($3.4 billion).
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Comments Area ( Total Comments: 1 )
Peterskylev Commented on 01 Aug 2016
But calling it a "meteorological disaster" is inaccurate, because it hides the fact that human beings are actually to blame. It means that when people die due to the horrendous pollution, the government will simply say it is due to "weather hazards", which makes the city itself seem blameless.