Friday June 02, 2023

Cold wave, fog grip City

By Ali Raza
December 24, 2022

LAHORE:With the increase in the ongoing cold wave, Air Quality Index (AQI) of the provincial metropolis deteriorated further and the City continued to be on the top of the world’s most polluted cities here on Friday.

Besides smog, fog has also attached the City increasing the impact of the earlier. Environmental experts said that the air quality and smog would increase with the presence of more moisture in the air.

The situation can be gauged by the fact that district administration has established special smog desks in various government hospitals of the city and also asked citizens to wear face masks while travelling outdoor.

Sources in Environment Department revealed that some of the already sealed pyrolysis plants, which used carbon and substandard fuel were operative again reasons best known to the authorities.

Data collected from IQAir revealed that the AQI of the City reached 255 and it topped the world’s most polluted cities while Delhi, India stood second with an AQI of 222 and Skopje, North Macedonia secured third position with an AQI of 182.

Sarajevo, Bosnia Herzegovina, with an AQI of 177 was fourth, Chengdu, China with an AQI of 174 was fifth, Baghdad, Iraq, an AQI of 169 was sixth, Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia, with an AQI of 169 was seventh, Belgrade, Serbia with an AQI of 168 was eighth, Kolkata, India with an AQI of 162 was ninth and Chongqing, China with an AQI of 161 was at 10th position.

Following the deteriorated AQI of the City, an important meeting on anti-smog campaign was held at the office of Deputy Commissioner Lahore Muhammad Ali. The meeting was attended by Additional Deputy Commissioners, Assistant Commissioners and officials of PDMA, Secretary RTA, Environment Department, LWMC, WASA, Traffic Police and other departments.

Deputy Commissioner Lahore took important decisions in the meeting to prevent smog and protect people from diseases. He prohibited entry of 20-year-old vehicles in the City while private vehicles plying on the City roads will have to obtain a fitness certificate.

The DC Lahore completely banned burning of substandard fuel and carbon in the provincial capital. DC Lahore also asked LWMC, Wasa and other government departments using heavy vehicles to get their damaged vehicles repaired in one month’s time.

The DC directed these departments especially LWMC, PHA, Wasa and MCL to immediately install reflectors on their vehicles to prevent accidents in fog. The DC appealed the citizens to reduce the use of vehicles and ensure use of masks while travelling outdoor. He said that special smog desks were established in various government hospitals of the City. He appealed to the citizens to take safety measures in smog and fog.

On the other hand, MET officials said that continental air was prevailing over most parts of the country. They predicted that cold and dry weather was expected in most parts while very cold in northern areas and north Balochistan.

They predicted that dense foggy conditions were likely to continue over Punjab, plain areas of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa and upper Sindh and frost was likely to occur at isolated places in Pothohar region and Kashmir during morning hours.

Friday’s minimum temperature was recorded at Leh where mercury dipped to -14°C, while in Lahore, it was 7°C and maximum was 15°C.