Dhaka keeps grappling with ‘hazardous’ air

22 March, 2021 12:00 AM printer

There is no respite for Dhaka dwellers from unhealthy air as it again ranked worst in the Air Quality Index (AQI) on Sunday morning and its air was classified as ‘hazardous’.

It had a score of 402 at 10:50 am. The air was classified as ‘hazardous’ and in this condition, everyone may experience more serious health effects, reports UNB.

 When the AQI value is more than 300, people are advised to avoid all outdoor exertion. India’s Delhi, Kolkata and Mumbai have occupied the next three positions in the list with scores of191,179 and173 respectively.

 The poor air quality of Dhaka, one of the most polluted cities of the world, has become a cause of concern for its resident as there is a correlation between severity of Covid-19 infections and long term exposure to air pollutants. The AQI, an index for reporting the daily air quality, informs people how clean or polluted the air of a certain city is and what associated health effects might be a concern for them.

 In Bangladesh, the AQI is based on five criteria pollutants - Particulate Matter (PM10 and PM2.5), NO2, CO, SO2 and Ozone.

 Bangladesh topped the list of the world’s most polluted countries in 2019 for PM2.5 exposure, according to an IQAir AirVisual report. The 2019 World Air Quality Report is based on data from the world’s largest centralised platform for real-time air quality data, combining efforts from thousands of initiatives run by citizens, communities, companies, non-profit organisations and governments.

Air pollution consistently ranks among the top risk factors for death and disability worldwide. Breathing polluted air has long been recognized as increasing a person’s chances of developing heart disease, chronic respiratory diseases, lung infections, and cancer, according to the report.