Plastic factories mainly responsible for smog in Lahore

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There are a lot of factors which are contributing to Lahore’s high pollution levels, including small industrial units and factories which burn tyres and plastic as fuel, farmers in the suburbs who burn crop residue, and brick kilns that do not use zigzag technology to heat the kilns.

The capital city of Punjab was obscured by clouds of smog on November 2 as high buildings and heritage sites were obscured by clouds of smog.

There was a motorbike rushing through it, and there were people riding through it as well. Amidst the diesel odors and the smell of charcoal, families went about their day-to-day business. According to a report published recently by the Global Alliance on Health and Pollution, an estimated 128,000 people die each year from air pollution and smog in Pakistan.

There is an estimate that 70% of Lahore’s trees have been cut down in order to accommodate residents, housing developments, and the construction of industrial units in the past two decades.

A number of factors affect the general health of the public, such as those mentioned by Dr Khalid from Services Hospital. A great deal of health risks are associated with smog, especially for those of us who have heart or circulatory disease, congestive heart failure, lung disease, pregnant women, outdoor workers, elderly people, young children, and athletes who exercise vigorously outdoors.

The Punjab government has declared a smog emergency during which all school students will be required to wear masks for a month. There was an immediate action taken after the Lahore High Court ordered improvement in air quality as a matter of urgency.

EPD announced that it would take strict action against people who ignored the emergency measures and did not sprinkle water on gravel, debris, and construction materials in the efforts to prevent further damage to the environment. As well as that, the government also ordered that smoke emissions from factories and vehicles be reduced continuously.

There is no doubt that public vehicles in Lahore and the surrounding cities and villages of the province still run mainly on highly polluting sulphur-laden gas. According to the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), about 40 percent of the air pollution in Lahore and the surrounding cities is due to this kind of gas.

It was a healthy day in the provincial metropolis on Thursday, according to the Air Quality Index (AQI). There has been a significant rise in the AQI calculations compared to last year. Five categories of pollution are included in the calculations, namely particulate matter, ground-level ozone, carbon monoxide, sulfur dioxide, and nitrogen dioxide. According to Met Office sources, the AQI rate in the early morning on Thursday was recorded between 192 and 200, depending on the source.

Naseem-ur-Rehman Shah, director of the EPD in Lahore, said that 62 factories have been found that have contributed to smog in the city by using harmful materials as fuels like plastic waste, tires, rubber, and old clothes. According to the letter sent by the Special Branch police to the Lahore commissioner, the officer responsible for the operation of the factories in question should be sanctioned.

AQI is a measure of the level of pollution in the air, and clearly indicating a lot of smog in the capital city of the Punjab province. A noted environmentalist, Mahmood Khalid Qamar, explained that the air in this city is very unhealthy, and we have a health threat. AQI ratings that are as high as 192-200 are considered unhealthy, while AQI ratings that are between 201 and 300 are deemed more hazardous, and AQI ratings that are over 300 are considered extremely hazardous.

As for Qamar, he has said that the pollution of the air is being caused primarily by the burning of crop residues and shoe factory wastes, the use of unrecommended coal, and the burning of trash black oil and tires. The environmentalist Kashif Salik has stated that there is an increase in air pollution in winter as a result of a change in wind speed and direction, as well as a change in the minimum temperature during winter.

It has been observed that the air in the winter is heavier than it is in the summer, and that this results in a large number of poisonous particles, such as toxic oxides, moving downward and polluting the atmosphere. According to Kashif Salik, resulting in a thick layer of polluted particles, including large amounts of carbon and smoke, that can quickly cover any mega city.

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