The Chinese government is taking vigorous action to ensure nothing interferes with the success of the upcoming Olympic Games. The latest action is ordering the closure of hundreds of factories in Beijing as well as in neighboring cities in an effort to make certain the air athletes breathe while participating in events is free of pollution. Businessmen are forecasting the closures will lead to thousands of workers deprived of pay for about eight weeks and steel production will decline by at least 12 %. Car owners will only be allowed use of their vehicles every other day.
A disinterested observer has several questions due to the closures. Is the air breathed by inhabitants of Beijing only to be pure for the Olympics or is the effort to end pollution ongoing? If factories must be closed to prevent air pollution, whey will they reopen once the games conclude? Will being allowed to drive every other day become a norm for car owners? We are simply wondering and asking these questions because if pollution control is important during the Olympics, isn’t it equally important after?