Take urgent measures to check Dhaka's air pollution


BANGLADESH'S capital city ranked the World's worst again in Air Quality Index on Tuesday morning. Dhaka had a score of 242 at 8:00am, which means the air quality was 'very unhealthy'. India's Kolkata, Pakistan's Lahore and Mongolia's Ulaanbaatar occupied the next three slots scoring 211, 198 and 198 respectively. When the AQI value is between 201 and 300, the city dwellers may have experienced its effects on health. In this situation, it's better for children, adults and people with respiratory diseases to avoid outdoor activities. Dhaka, Bangladesh's overcrowded capital, has been grappling with air pollution for a long time. There are many reasons for deteriorating air quality. At least a thousand brick kilns have been step up in and around the city and that is one of the major reasons behind making the air quality bad. Series of construction works - especially public constructions like flyovers and road repairing -- are other major reasons. Vehicles run on fuel with higher level of sulfur which has been identified as another source of air pollution in the city.
The solution for all is pretty simple--while public infrastructure projects can't be stopped regular use of water trucks to spray the roads during construction should be implemented at all such junctures. Regarding the brick kilns a more drastic solution must be found--they should relocate to areas with at least a 50 km radius outside of Dhaka. However, country's apex court on Tuesday directed to stop activities of all brick kilns adjacent to Dhaka within next 15 days. Despite the enactment of a law in 2018 to make these kilns environment friendly, a recent report indicated that of the 7,772 brick kilns in the country, 2,123 have not converted to the required modern and environment-friendly technology.
It becomes a common habit of us that we don't pay attention to any crisis until it goes out of control. Protective measures are needed to save the people from the adverse effect of air pollution. The sooner the better.