Sandstorms from Mongolia have
caused a pollution alert to be issued in Beijing.
The Beijing Environmental Protection
Bureau warned residents, on Tuesday, of "heavily polluted"
air and urged those with respiratory problems to remain indoors.
Sandstorms originating in Mongolia
usually affect Beijing in March and April.
With some 70 days remaining
before the start of the Beijing summer Olympics, the Mongolian sandstorm
again raises concern about how pollution might affect athletes. Indeed,
twice-Olympic champion, Haile Gebrselassie, has announced he will not
compete in the men’s marathon in Beijing because he suffers from asthma.
Both China and South Korea,
which suffers the effects of Mongolian sandstorms, have planted hundreds
of thousands of trees in Mongolia in an attempt to reduce the impact
of Gobi Desert sandstorms.