It’s actually worse than you’d think. It actually wasn’t something I was thinking about until my throat starting getting scratchy. It’s noticeably bad.
There’s a website that measures various pollutants in the air and then turns those into a number called the AQI (air quality index). As I write this, the AQI in Beijing is 167 –anything over 50 will impact your health. For comparison’s sake, the current AQI in Toronto is 9. So… that’s not great.