Islamabad’s air pollution reaches record highest

Federal capital’s air pollution reaches record highest, reveals the 24 hours ambient air quality report of Pakistan Environmental Protection Agency (Pak-EPA)’s on Wednesday.

According to the report, increased ratio of environmental pollutants causing bad air and degraded atmosphere leading to smog.

The National Environmental Quality Standards (NEQS) by EPA set a threshold of 35 microgrammes per cubic meter for particulate matter of 2.5 microns (PM2.5), 120 microgrammes per cubic meter for sulphur dioxide (SO2) and 80 microgrammes per cubic meter to ensure clean ambiance. The report highlighted that the past 24 hours average of PM2.5 was recorded 198.96 microgrammes per cubic meter which was reported the highest ever during 8 hours average at 280.3 microgrammes per cubic meter from 1600 to 2400 hours.

The other parameters of daily quality report included SO2 and NO2 which are generally released from industrial emissions. The 24 hours average of SO2 was 19.88 microgrammes per cubic meter and 43.44 microgrammes per cubic meter of NO2 and both effluents were recorded within the permissible limits.

When contacted the EPA official informed that the air quality was hazardous due to increased vehicular emissions and prolonged dry weather resulted in huge accumulation of suspended particles of air pollutants in the atmosphere.

The official further informed that the air quality was hazardous for all age groups and the general public was advised to wear face covering outdoors and avoid unnecessary travel in the federal capital due to high pollution level.

To a question, she said that the areas along hilly terrain mostly possessed increased propensity of generating air pollution due to the natural topography creating a blockade for winds causing air pollution.

She further informed that one of the major reasons for Capital’s air pollution was large number of vehicles entering the capital on daily basis. The industrial sector particularly steel manufacturing units spewing dark smoke were the troublemakers and had adopted carbon absorbing scrubbers that helped control dark carbon release into the atmosphere, she added.

During the winter season, many local people in the slum areas and CDA sanitary workers were burning plastic or household waster for heating purposes during cold weather which was also increasing air pollution.

The CDA official clearly mentioned that the Authority’s staff was strictly warned to not burn waste whereas the public was encouraged to report it to concerned director for further action if found any staffer burning waste.

Islamabad’s air pollution reaches record highest – Daily Times

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