DIY air purifier from the Particle Counting blog.

Breathe easier in China with this inexpensive DIY air purifier

A PhD student and Fulbright scholar based in Beijing has a great little Tumblr blog that shows, with data, that you can skip the expensive air purifiers and make your own for about $30.

This post goes through the details of how to make the air purifier, and where to buy a proper filter. The principle is embarrassingly simple: Buy a typical box fan, stick a HEPA filter on the front of it, breathe clean air -- no …

Shanghai air quality mascots

Shanghai air pollution gets cutesy AQI Girls, but missing one

I'm sure we'll all breath a deep sigh of relief that Shanghai’s Environmental Protection Bureau (EPB) is sparing no expense to improve communication with the city's public on the quality of air in China's largest city.

According to blogger Angel Hsu, the EPB has recently updated their Web site to feature a more (user) friendly interface with the addition of "AQI girl" that expresses in cartoon form what our lungs …

Banned pesticides in Chinese produce

Banned pesticides in Chinese produce — no surprise, nothing’s safe

A couple years ago I wrote about how absent trust is in day-to-day living in China. With food scare after food scare, unfortunately nothing seems to be improving.

So, it's little surprise to read that Greenpeace is reporting, "Banned pesticides detected on vegetables in Tesco and other supermarkets in China." The following sums up the report well:

Supermarket giants such as Tesco should be leading the way when …

Seal hunters in Canada

It’s hard being a seal clubber these days — Chinese animal rights group calls Canadians ‘racist imperialists’

There are no shortage of ways to trip yourself up in the emotionally saturated mire where animal cruelty meets cultural relativism. I'm usually happy to leave such mine fields alone, but rare is the opportunity for me to talk about my homeland, my nowland, and clubbing baby seals all in one breath.

This past week Canadian Fisheries Minister Gail Shea was in Beijing to announce a long-fought for deal to open up the…

Brother Power vs. The Modern World

ChinaSMACK translates a posting over at Chinese BBS Mop entitled "Birth of 2010’s most awesome environmental protector -- Brother Power! His resplendent debut shocks the whole world" -- awesome about covers it (and there's a lot needing covering in this story).

Contrary to what the sequence of pictures show (see them all at ChinaSMACK) this crazy Anhui resident has some set of balls. Stripping down to his stre…

350 Day of Climate Action coming to China

On October 24, 2009, relatively small groups of people around the world will create an action that helps to raise awareness about the 350 International Day of Climate Action, and with a long list of events taking part across the country, China's no exception.

If you're like me and are wondering what the heck the whole "350" thing is, here's a good explanation. Essentially:
350 parts per million is what many scien…

China’s Foreign Ministry spokesperson heating up Spanish poll

In rare form, I happened by the China Daily Web site and noticed a large picture with a caption stating, "Jiang Yu is among the most beautiful women in politics..." leading to an article lauding China's Foreign Ministry spokesperson's appearence in a user-created poll at Spanish newspaper 20minutos.es.

The poll has visitors rating the world's most beautiful women in politics on a scale of 1 to 5. The China Dai…

“Earth Hour” VS “Serf Liberation Day”

It seems that whilst I have been happily elaborating on the duties of my teaching position this week, and spending 5 minutes of class making my students aware of Earth Hour, that I have in fact been being slightly controversial. And... I'm glad. I've not been involved in anything even remotely underhand since I first came to China, and fell into a weekly underground class, with 5 students, talking politics and religi…

China wants Chinese product importers to pay for her pollution

I am quite excited about the UN Climate Conference happening later this year in Copenhagen. It has all the promise of the Kyoto protocol, but unlike Kyoto, Copenhagen is set in a world with an increased sense of urgency and much deeper awareness to the issues that still seemed "in the future" 11 years ago.

In an excellent summary of the Copenhagen conference's significance, Michael McCarthy from the Independen…

Photo of the Week: A Beautiful Landscape

This great photo by photographer Jaune d'eau is the perfect visual pairing for the news this week that China has overtaken the US as the world's leading producer of climate-warming gasses.

Submit Your Photos
Every week(ish) we'll feature an interesting, funny, beautiful or otherwise noteworthy photo here. If you have a photo you think might make a good Photo of the Week, throw it in the pool at the Lost Laowa…