New study shows Beijing air quality still below standard

The Beijing Olympics will get underway in just over a month but the air quality in the Chinese capital is still below international standards according to a new study carried by the BBC.

The level of air pollution in Beijing has been one of the primary concerns ever since the city was awarded the 2008 Olympics. The Chinese authorities, however, said they would take measures to ensure that Beijing’s air quality would meet World Health Organisation standards.

But the BBC’s test has proved otherwise, with the air quality in Beijing failing to meet the WHO's air quality standard on six out of the seven days monitored.

Back in March the IOC said that that athletes taking part in endurance events may be at risk due to Beijing's air pollution, with Haile Gebrselassie deciding to pull out of the marathon due to fears over air quality in the Chinese capital.

But the situation should change slightly on July 20 when the Chinese authorities implement a two-month pollution control plan, which will see two million vehicles taken off the roads as well as the temporary closure of factories and heavy industry.

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