Atmospheric Sciences

Perils of drought go beyond the US

The drought-stricken US Midwest seems far removed from the world's meal tables, but the interconnectedness to the global economy of the corn and soya beans it grows will be noticed in coming months.

Wednesday, 15 August, 2012, 10:54pm

Casualties rise as waters surge

Heavy rains continued to batter northern and southwestern parts of the country yesterday, with dozens reported dead or missing in Hebei , while authorities were expecting the massive Three Gorges Dam to receive its biggest inflow of water in two years by about 8pm tonight.

24 Jul 2012 - 12:00am

Free as the air? In HK we pay through the nose to breathe

Elsewhere in the world people say the air is free. But not in Hong Kong. Here, if you want to breathe good-quality air, moderately free from pollution, then you have to pay for the privilege.

I'm not talking here about paying through the nose for a whiff of pure oxygen in an over-designed health 'bar', although you can do that if you want to.

5 Jul 2012 - 12:00am

Floods kill eight, affect half a million

Heavy rain and flooding has hit many parts of Guangdong, claiming eight lives and causing direct economic losses estimated at more than 700 million yuan (HK$860 million) since Thursday.

Thirty-four counties and cities have been battered by rainstorms and more than half a million people affected, the province's Emergency Management Office said.

27 Jun 2012 - 12:00am

Why fume now at U.S. over air data?

Beijing has finally let the cat out of the bag, admitting just how offended it has been by the release of air pollution readings by US diplomatic missions on the mainland.

The US embassy in Beijing and its consulates in Shanghai and Guangzhou must stop the 'irresponsible' practice of publishing their own real-time monitoring data online, mainland officials said this month.

21 Jun 2012 - 12:00am

Malls in air-con drive

More than 80 shopping malls will go green this summer by maintaining their indoor temperature at the recommended level of 24 to 26 degrees Celsius.

It comes after 88 malls, including Langham Place, Festival Walk and Cityplaza, signed an energy-saving agreement with the government. They will lower the use of air-conditioning between June and September this year.

11 Jun 2012 - 12:00am

New government must do more to clean up the city's polluted air

Air quality is still at dangerous levels most of the time in Hong Kong and may only improve during summer. Most pollution is locally generated.

I am worried about the PM2.5 level (fine particle concentrations) in Hong Kong.

9 May 2012 - 12:00am

Unify emission standards, global shipowners say

Mounting pressure on the shipping industry to reduce harmful exhaust emissions has forced a global shipowners' lobby group to call for a set of unified international standards.

The Baltic and International Maritime Council (BIMCO) said unified standards were needed to avoid the sort of controversy troubling airlines.

2 May 2012 - 12:00am

Temperature rise can be attributed to global warming and urbanisation

I refer to the article by Wyss Yim ('Hot? Blame the urban heat island', April 1).

To enable your readers to better understand the issue on the urban heat island effect in Hong Kong and the roles of carbon dioxide and water vapour in global climate change, we would like to provide the following information.

25 Apr 2012 - 12:00am

New device can measure emissions on the move

Researchers at City University have developed a ground-breaking mobile detector that can measure the amount of harmful emissions coming from a moving vehicle.

By using it while tailing the suspect vehicle, the device can give a reading for volatile organic compounds and other pollutants.

4 Feb 2012 - 12:00am

Dragon arrives in a choking cloud

More than just festive spirits were running high as the mainland celebrated the Lunar New Year: the blaze of fireworks set off a spike in air pollution in major cities.

25 Jan 2012 - 12:00am

We've had enough of all this hot air

At long last, Hong Kong has new targets to aim for to improve air quality. They replace guidelines formulated 25 years ago and are closer to those recommended by the World Health Organisation in 2005. That they still fall short in several key areas and are the same as suggestions made after a public consultation in 2009 is disappointing, though.

20 Jan 2012 - 12:00am

Pollution set to stay

Hong Kong's dated clean-air targets will be toughened - for the first time in 25 years - starting in 2014, but green groups say they will still fall short of World Health Organisation standards.

The Executive Council on Tuesday endorsed 22 new air quality objectives first put out for public consultation in 2009.

7 May 2015 - 3:07pm

More focus needed to cut air pollution

Mainland China's rapid industrial development has led to many problems of air pollution in its cities. Residents have long wanted the government to tackle the problem - and provide more accurate information about pollution.

18 Jan 2012 - 12:00am

No cause to breathe easier: experts

Hong Kong will still lag international standards even after it approves tougher air quality objectives, environmental groups say, while experts believe the city will struggle to meet some of the new targets.

18 Jan 2012 - 12:00am