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Desertification (the expanding of deserts) is a major problem for China, primarily in the northern half of the country. Over the weekend, Beijing was hit by an unusual combination of smog and sand that created a thick brown haze and air quality in the "very unhealthy" range. This map shows the proximity of Beijing to China's encroaching deserts. The sand that hung in the air in Beijing this weekend is thought to have originated in the Gobi Desert, the edges of which now begin less than 50 miles from the capital. www.neaspec.org/sites/default/files/dss_5.jpeg
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