Wednesday, July 09, 2008

Wordless Wednesday - Smog-choked Shanghai

Day breaks over Pudong
Shanghai, China
May 2007
[Click to enlarge]

Quick note: This is the last sky-themed photo from this week's Thematic Photographic challenge. Click here to see where it all began - and to get in on the action. I'll post a new photo and theme later this evening, so please be sure to check back.
If Beijing's air is anything like Shanghai's - and news reports suggest it is - then it's going to be a fun time for the world's Olympic athletes later this summer. The air is so thick with coal-fed pollution that you can practically taste it when you first walk outside.

Rumor has it that just breathing the air is akin to smoking two packs of cigarettes per day. Either way, it's not the world's most environmentally happy place.

Those clouds you see? Not clouds. The first 15 or so degrees of the horizon are basically smog. I took this shot at 5:42 a.m. from the 66th floor of my hotel. The sun had already risen, but had not yet cleared the smog. The good news is you get a pretty spectacular sunrise when it finally burns through the atmospheric muck (see here). The bad news? Well, you may die young.

Your turn: Your most memorable image of the sky was...? (And click here if you want to submit a sky-themed photo.)

25 comments:

Holly Schwendiman said...

Another great photo for WW. I'm up early this week!

Hugs,
Holly

smarmoofus said...

Oh, that is really sad. And speaking of smog, may I suggest watching Wall-E? Bring the kids.

Happy WW!
-smarmoofus

Robin said...

Lately, I'm very last minute for your fun and games; my WW is a series of sky captures...and actually, even with a point and shoot, I can't believe the first one in the series :).

To answer your question, my most memorable sky image was of a COMPLETE DOUBLE RAINBOW (seen in SC) following a lengthy rain. It was such a spectacular show, EVERYONE stopped to marvel! We were eating fast food, and I was touched by the teenage boys who were excited about it. Their response was unexpected, but it was encouraging to observe.

Your shot hear? Not quite so encouraging :/.

Bunny Trails said...

Wow! That's just sad. An excellent shot, but the content is rather sad. I couldn't stand living somewhere like that. In fact, blue skies are one of my favorite things about living in Colorado. :D

I have two up today - both are fireworks.

http://photo-bunny.blogspot.com/2008/07/wordless-wednesday-color-fun.html

http://bunny-trails.blogspot.com/2008/07/wordless-wednesday-family-fireworks.html

I also had another entry for SKY - http://photo-bunny.blogspot.com/2008/07/sky-2.html

Happy WW! Looking forward to the next Thematic Photographic. :D

milet said...

someday, i'd like to visit shanghai.

here's my WW!
hope you can take a peek! thanks.


milet!

Robin said...

I love the ethereal qualities of the shot, but I'm sure glad I don't have to live (and try to breathe) there!

Robin
(the other one)

Tammy said...

Wow, that is smog!

Happy WW!

Raven said...

Wow... that's depressing - impressive photo, though.

June said...

That's pretty depressing. I wonder if Bejing has similar air pollution and if so, I wonder how the Olympians will do.

Urban Thought said...

Reminds me of NY, LA, and a few other choice places with a lot of congestion.

Jenn said...

Amazing photo. Sad & amazing.

R. Sherman said...

I have a friend who traveled to China two years ago, and he told the entire eastern half of the country is like that.

Yuk.

Cheers.

Expat Mom said...

Yuck. That doesn`t sound like the ideal place to live! Can you imagine what that smog does to the lungs of little kids? :S

Suzie said...

Anyway it makes for a good shot

Margerie said...

I think you should get an award for bravery. I don't think I would want to be on the 66th floor of any building in Shanghai. Fabulous photo as per usual.

Cough, cough. That is how Northern California looks right now.

I would love to join the fun, but camera died...am in reruns now....

rashbre said...

I tried to find the beijing webcams to get a sense of the weather and clarity, but there are surprisingly few of them around.

I'm using the one on the roof of the Residence Hotel at the moment hooked into rashbre central, but it seemed to go wrong a few days ago. Dust in the works or something.

Best rashbre

Allison Says said...

Wow, what a beautiful photo. I love seeing your posts throughout the week, Carmi...always beautiful and inspiring.

Happy WW!

Lori's Light Extemporanea said...

Awesome, Carmi! I've missed seeing your photos...happy WW.

Hayley Townley, Breast Cancer Survivor Extraordinaire said...

Great shot, Carmi. I managed to get my Wordless Wednesday and my improgging word in the same post. I was hoping to incorporate thematic photographic in there too, but to no avail (ran out of time, not because the idea wasn't there!)

Thanks for sharing!

Susan said...

Beautiful and horrible. As usual, Carmi, you manage to take beautiful photos no matter what the subject.

Stephanie, Mama Dramatist said...

Yikes!! I thought we had it bad here in Houston!!

Great pic, though. Happy WW!!

Beaches said...

Wow-Thanks for posting such a powerful image.

Killlashandra said...

The pollution there is amazing. I have to agree, I wonder what kind of impact that will have on the athletes too. Great picture!

Heidi said...

Ummm... I want to know what happened at the BBQ and why you don't think you will be invited again. ;-)

Ryanne said...

It may be smog choked, but that is a very beautiful picture. Happy wordless and thanks for sharing.