Lahore continues to be in the throes of smog

Published November 22, 2023
A man buys a face mask from a vendor at Jain Mandir Chowk to save himself from smog. — White Star
A man buys a face mask from a vendor at Jain Mandir Chowk to save himself from smog. — White Star

LAHORE: The provincial capital is facing a severe air pollution crisis as the smog levels continued touching hazardous levels on Tuesday.

The city recorded an air quality index (AQI) at 371 at 9am, according to the global air quality monitoring platform, IQAir. An AQI below 50 is considered safe for breathing while an AQI above 300 is considered hazardous and can cause serious health problems.

The level of air pollution varies across the city at 9pm it was 411 at Fida Hussain House while Polo Ground Cantt recorded 399, UMT 371, Syed Maratib Ali Road 337, CERP Office 336, Lahore American School 341, NETSOL 315, Mall Road 313, Generation Pvt Ltd 311 and Pakistan Engineering Services (Pvt) Ltd 305.

Smog, a mixture of smoke, dust and fog, reduces visibility and causes respiratory disease and eye irritation among the citizens. It is mainly caused by the burning of crop residue, vehicular emissions, industrial pollution, and low wind speed.

The Provincial Disaster Management Authority (PDMA) has declared smog a ‘calamity’ and banned the burning of crop residue across the province. It has also advised the people to wear masks, avoid outdoor activities and use public transport to reduce the smog. The PDMA has also urged the government to take steps to improve the air quality and enforce the environmental laws.

Published in Dawn, November 22nd, 2023

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