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January 28, 2015

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More sleet and snow ... and less pollution

SLEET and snow is expected in the city through Friday, forecasters said yesterday.

But while Shanghai may be shivering under leaden skies, the wintry weather will dampen down air pollution levels, said the Shanghai Meteorological Bureau.

Yesterday saw sleet and snow triggered by the combined influence of a strong cold front and southwesterly warm moisture.

Jiading District reported the first sleet at 4:10pm, followed by Chongming County, which observed slight snowfall five minutes later. Sleet and snow spread eastward through the whole city from around dusk.

“I just thought that it was rain but it turned out to be snow,” one downtown pedestrian said yesterday evening.

Today will see more sleet in the morning but this will give way to drizzle as the day progresses. Temperatures will be between 2 and 6 degrees Celsius.

Light rain is likely to fall in the city tomorrow, with temperatures slightly up to between 4 and 7 degrees.

Spells of drizzle or sleet and snow are set to return early Friday but will peter during the day.

January comes to an end on Saturday, when it will be dry with gray skies and low temperatures ranging between 3 and 6 degrees.

But wet weather is set to return on Sunday, with a drizzly start to February forecast.

Today’s is the second spell of snow in the city this month, following flurries recorded around January 6.

According to Man Liping, a chief service officer at the bureau, based on meteorological data between 1981 and 2010, Shanghai sees an average of six snowy days each winter. Most occur in January.

Sleet, snow, drizzle and general damp weather is expected to help wash away the city’s pollutants, which reached almost 15 times World Health Organization safe levels on Sunday.

By 7pm yesterday, the city’s Air Quality Index dropped to 34 — considered “excellent” — with the concentration of tiny PM2.5 particles slipping to 17.7 micrograms per cubic meter.

Today’s air quality is forecast to be excellent, the Shanghai Environmental Monitoring Center said.


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