Air quality in Islamabad improves after rain

Official says hazardous pollutants recorded within safe limits

APP June 20, 2022
A view of Islamabad city. PHOTO: FILE


The recent spell of pre-monsoon rainfall has helped plummet scorching heatwave in the federal capital and subsided the soaring pollution turning the capital's air quality healthy.

The air quality of the federal capital on Sunday was reported healthy as suspended particles were recorded below permissible limits in the atmosphere along with the pollutants' ratio due to consistent rainy weather and reduced vehicular traffic on roads. The air quality data has been collected by the Pakistan Environmental Protection Agency (Pak-EPA) which monitors air pollutants ratio for 24 hours based on three intervals of eight hours of data collection from different locations.

The Pak-EPA data revealed that the air quality throughout the three intervals of data monitoring remained high.

The hazardous air pollutant particulate matter of 2.5 microns (PM2.5), which was a lethal atmospheric contaminant, remained 16.33 micro grammes per cubic meter on average which is higher than the NEQS of 35 mic-programmes per cubic meter and denotes the air quality unhealthy. PM2.5 is generated through the combustion of an engine, industrial emissions, burning garbage or inflammable material and dust blown up by fast-moving cars plying on non-cemented patches of the roads.

Moreover, the frequent forest fires in the federal capital also created high suspended particles, dust and particulate matter in the atmosphere. However, a spike was witnessed during the peak hours that was mainly due to congestion of automobiles plying on the roads after schools vans, office buses and public cars caused congestion on the main thoroughfares, an official of EPA said.

Published in The Express Tribune, June 20th, 2022.


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