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Episode number 5 of @sciencemug podcast tells you that Beijing's urban extent quadrupled in the first decade of 2000, and that this created a "ring of impact" around China's capital. The ring causes meteorological changes which, in turn, lead to an increase of urban temperature and pollution. The discovery has been published on the "Journal of Geophysical Research: Atmospheres" by a team of scientists from 'Stanford', 'Cal Tech' and the 'University of Southampton' (indeed there would have been also other two authors, one from the 'University of Kaleidoscopic Town' and the other from the 'Institute for Rolling Dices and Eating a Marshmallow in The Middle of a Tropical Storm', but they were too shy to put their names on the paper...) Read the text and see the comics here: http://goo.gl/8r0lFG Ciaz SM