Assessing smog awareness and preventive practices in Lahore
- By --
- Tuesday, 29 Jun, 2021
The urban centers and settlements are being impacted by the issues of smog in Asia, and the same condition can be seen in Lahore because of industrial development, an increase in the car ownership rate, uncontrolled deforestation, urban sprawl, and urbanization. It has been observed that Lahore has faced multiple issues because of smog last year, and it increased health issues. The health-related issues that have been increased because of the smog layer in the last year are respiratory problems as a respiratory infection, eye infection, asthma, allergies, the increase in the number of premature deaths because of cardiac pathologies.
There are multiple types of research that have proved that the issues related to blood pressure as a high level of systolic and diastolic blood pressure in the students of Lahore because of maximum exposure to pollution. The long term analysis has shown that these health issues may be increased in number and could affect more people. The Pakistan Environmental Protection Agency and Provisional EPA is monitoring the situation in Lahore and EPA prepared a draft National Air Quality Standard in 2010, and it has been observed that the air quality standard of Lahore is deteriorated because of the lack of awareness and adoption of measures to address the issues of pollution specifically smog issues.
The European Commission and the WHO has reported that the air quality of Lahore has been worsened as the lack of proper strategies and approaches that need to be implemented in the Lahore region. Many researches proved that the high-class people follow the guidelines and take the measures to reduce their exposure to the smog while the middle-class people are aware of the intensity of the health issues that are being increased due to smog and the most of people are being impacted by the layer of smog in Lahore. There is a need to devise strategies and introduction of awareness campaigns by the environmental protection departments as to reduce the impact of smog. The government and the authorities need to devise methods that can be helpful for non-science qualification and low-income people to reduce the interaction of exposure to smog.
Urbanization, industrialization, and deforestation are the main factors that have reduced the level and standard of air quality in Lahore. The people of Lahore are facing socio-economic issues as health-related issues have worsened the condition of poor people. The proper abatement measures should be adopted for the sake of public health. The environmental protection agency (EPA) has designed the policy based on the issues of smog as “Policy on Controlling Smog 2017” in 2017. The policy has incorporated the situation of Lahore in it as a device plan to reduce the impact of smog in Punjab, specifically in Lahore, because it is the most impacted city. The policy is concluded with the air quality index of Lahore, and it is also based on different solution as
- The adoption and implementation of Euro-II Standards for vehicle emission
- Installation of vehicular pollution control devices
- Better traffic management as removing the permanent and temporary encroachments
- Controlling the burning of municipal waste and crop residue
- Building capacity to monitor and forecast episodes of high air pollution
- Creation of woodland in and around major cities
- Controlling fugitive dust from road shoulders and construction sites
- Planned urban and industrial development
- Greening of industrial processes
- Regional environmental agreement
These approaches should be adopted along with the awareness of people to reduce unnecessary trips and weekend trips that can increase the exposure of smog. It should be mandatory to wear a mask outdoor.
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