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Beijing Televised Sunrise

The smog has become so thick in Beijing that the city’s natural light-starved masses have begun flocking to huge digital commercial television screens across the city to observe virtual sunrises.


The futuristic screens installed in the Chinese capital usually advertize tourist destinations, but as the season’s first wave of extremely dangerous smog hit – residents donned air masks and left their homes to watch the only place where the sun would hail over the horizon that morning.

Commuters across Beijing found themselves cloaked in a thick, gray haze on Thursday as air pollution monitors issued a severe air warning and ordered the elderly and school children to stay indoors until the quality improved.

The city’s air quality is often poor, especially in winter when stagnant weather patterns combine with an increase in coal-burning to exacerbate other forms of pollution and create periods of heavy smog for days at a time.