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Old Dec 12th 2017, 1:13 pm   #1
Yaffle 
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Default Life in Tianjin (pollution)

Hello,
My husband and I considering teaching jobs in the TEDA area, Tianjin.

We'd like to know more about the pollution level in that area - is it better than Beijing, or the same? I know the cities are only about 150km apart, and bringing our children into Beijing-level air pollution does worry me, but the school looks good.

Thank you for any advice about the area!
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Old Dec 13th 2017, 2:26 am   #2
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Default Re: Life in Tianjin (pollution)

First, never compare air to Beijing or any other 'bad' place. That is like saying "waiter, I'd prefer the soup that only has three cockroaches in it instead of five". Your baseline should not be what is the worst, but what is or is not healthy.

At the moment (i.e. this second) the air is better than Beijing, but Tianjin is in the same general region / geography such that pollution can get trapped over the whole area. The airport shut last year due to pollution, and there have been some Code Red air days (by Chinese standards, which are very very lax) which closed down the city.

Tianjin Air Pollution: Real-time PM2.5 Air Quality Index (AQI)

Overall the pollution there is considered 'Very High' by most westerners. The PM2.5 pollution is several times the W.H.O. maximums even though that is considered "good" air by the Chinese air quality indexes (W.H.O. limits are 25μg/m3). London averages PM2.5 of 15μg/m3. At the moment most Tianjin stations are reporting 50-100 μg/m3. The W.H.O. considers basically anything above 2 or 3 μg/m3 to be harmful. When it gets really bad the PM2.5 pollution gets into the hundreds. These are the small particles that get into your lungs and bloodstream and can cause serious damage long term.

If the kids are <5-10, you are bringing them over at a time when their lungs are still developing and pollution can cause long-term issues. If anyone in your family currently has breathing issues (asthma, etc) then I definitely wouldn't make this move.
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Old Dec 13th 2017, 10:39 am   #3
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Default Re: Life in Tianjin (pollution)

Thanks, penguinsix, that's really helpful. They're a bit older than that, but I do hear what you say. We'd love to be offered a job in the Pearl River Delta, but that hasn't happened, and this one has, so we're looking at what's on offer and weighing up our options.

If anyone has lived in Tianjin I'd love to hear more about what it's like.
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