Siyam Hoque

2020-06-05 10:44:14 BdST

Dhaka ranks 2nd worst in Air Quality Index

After showing improvement for the last few days, Dhaka again ranked second worst in the Air Quality Index (AQI) on Friday morning.

It had an AQI score of 160 at 08:45 am and its air quality was classified as ‘unhealthy for sensitive group’.

United Arab Emirates Dubai and Indonesia’s Jakarta occupied the first and third spots in the list of cities with the worst air with scores 172 and 160 respectively.

When the AQI scores between 151 and 200, some members of the general public may experience health effects and members of sensitive groups may start experience more serious health effects.

The AQI, an index for reporting 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.

‘National crisis’

Dhaka has long been grappling with air pollution.

The situation was so bad that the High Court stepped in and issued a nine-point directive to improve air quality in January.

Environment, Forests and Climate Change Minister Md Shahab Uddin admitted that air pollution in the capital reached an intolerable level and said brick kilns are responsible for 58 percent of the pollution.

“Green belts should be set up at various locations of the city and water bodies need to be conserved. A system should be in place to identify how people can live safely in polluted air. Air pollution should be seen as an important national crisis,

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