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Haze over Eastern China

Haze over Eastern China

Thick haze hung over eastern China, just south of the capital city of Beijing, at the end of October 2010. The Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on NASA’s Aqua satellite captured this natural-color image on October 31. A nearly unbroken sea of haze spreads over the coastal plain and out to sea. West of the plain, haze hugs valley floors while skies over peaks remain clear.

Around the Yellow Sea appears a spray of tiny red dots. These dots are hot spots where MODIS has detected unusually warm surface temperatures, likely resulting from fires. Agricultural fires likely contribute to the haze, but it probably also results from a combination of urban and industrial pollution.

NASA image courtesy Jeff Schmaltz, MODIS Rapid Response, NASA Goddard Space Flight Center. Caption by Michon Scott.