The Atlantic in Focus series just had a photo article on the dangerous levels of pollution in Beijing.
Alan Taylor’s article titled, “China’s Toxic Sky” shows startling photos of smog with levels so bad — at one point measured 40 times recommended safety levels.
Read more: here.
Here is one Beijing based artists attempt to combat this toxic environment with this bicycle project:
Matt Hope’s “breathing bike” (image via fabricatorz.com)
Here is more from Hyperallergic.com
a Beijing-based artist, is taking his adopted city’s problems head on. Instead of hiding in his apartment and dealing with Beijing’s extreme extreme pollution crisis with the help of air filters and masks, Hope is hitting the streets with a bicycle-cum-sculpture that actively filters the air around it.
A short documentary shows Hope pedaling around the city on his “breathing bike” with his face in a fighter pilot mask. The bike works by creating electricity from the pedaling motion, powering a wind generator. Air gets pulled into the bike through an Ikea trashcan, and the dust particles get positively charged and stick to a metal trumpet. The cleaned air gets propelled through a tube to the gas mask, fit for breathing.
Here is a video: