Air quality - GulfToday

Air quality

pollution-5

Heavy traffic, open fires for cooking as well as years of cutting down trees have all contributed to poor air quality.

I think countries need to do more to tackle air pollution, at least after witnessing what happened in the Indian capital New Delhi.

United Nations experts have rightly deemed air pollution a human rights violation. It’s a deadly, man-made problem responsible for some seven million premature deaths every year, according to the World Health Organization (WHO).

The situation turned so bad that five million masks were distributed at schools in Delhi last week after pollution made the air so toxic that officials were forced to declare a public health emergency.

More than 80 farmers have been arrested in northern India for starting fires that contributed to the pollution crisis in New Delhi, but I do not think it is the solution.

I just also heard that dangerously poor air quality has forced Pakistan’s government to close all schools in Lahore, the capital of eastern Punjab province and home to 11 million people.

Thick smog is said to be hanging over the city, caused in part by widespread crop burning in the surrounding province. It’s a popular practice among poor farmers, who set fire to remnants of the previous season’s crop to prepare the land for their next planting. Punjab is considered Pakistan’s breadbasket.

It should be acknowledged that heavy traffic, open fires for cooking and warmth as well as years of cutting down trees have all contributed to poor air quality.

Dilip Simon

Via email