The London Evening Standard this afternoon had a full page picture of the black oil smoke billowing over the city, under the headline “Timebomb”, and making crisis out of the need to clear up London’s skies before we all die a horrible choking death. The sense of doom was spoiled only by the sensational ice-blue sky above, under which the Standard seller was unseasonally basking.
I was left undisturbed by the explosions yesterday, and the black plume itself didn’t make an appearance until dusk, when the heavy smell of petroleum caused a glance upwards. The early darkness turned out to be only in the northern half of the sky. If we had been right underneath the smoke, we would probably not even have realised it.