Air pollution is a cause of concern for all of us, but especially in China, where it's been a serious health risk for a number of years. To show just exactly what millions of Chinese people that live in affected urban areas have to deal with, here are some photos that show what major American cities would look like if they had the same air quality as China. After seeing them, you're bound to appreciate the air that you breathe, no matter where you live.

Just like anywhere else, the United States has problems with air pollution, but things could be a whole lot worse. Thanks to the Clean Air Act, a federal law regarding air pollution control, Americans don't have to breathe in toxic fumes on a daily basis, something millions of Chinese that live in industrial areas have to do. For example, the city of Xingtai, one of China's oldest and most polluted cities, seven million people are constantly breathing in air that actually smells of gasoline. As terrible as that sounds, according to the World Health Organization, the city only ranks eighth in the world in air pollution. Cities in India, Saudi Arabia, Iran, and Cameroon fared a lot worse, which is saying something, considering the fact that just last year, an 8-year-old Chinese girl was diagnosed with lung cancer. Amongst adults in China, rates of lung cancer in cities was two to three times higher than in the countryside. Pretty scary stuff.

To put things in perspective, below are photos of what certain American cities would look like if they had the exact same levels of dangerous airborne particles and pollution as various Chinese cities. You thought smog in Los Angeles was bad? You won't after seeing these. Let's hope China and other nations around the world do something to clean up the air for future generations. Breathing clean air is about as basic a human right as there is.

Dallas, TexasSan Diego, CaliforniaPhoenix, ArizonaSan Jose, CaliforniaHouston, TexasPhiladelphia, Pennsylvania

Chicago, Illinois

New York City, New York

Los Angeles, California


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