Savar and Trishal at the top of air pollution in Bangladesh, public life ruined
By Adnan Mahfuz
Dhaka is already on the list of polluted cities. But this year, the Trishal of Mymensingh and Savar of Dhaka are repeatedly lagging behind the capital city. Citizens are apprehensive about why Savar and Trishal are at the top of pollution despite being much greener than the capital. According to the US-based Air Quality Index (AQI), pollution has reached “unhealthy” levels.
Savar and Trishal are getting more and more polluting material than the capital Dhaka.
Especially brick kilns, waste incineration, black smoke from factories and cars are responsible for this pollution. Brickfields have been started in Savar and Trishal since the beginning of this month. Most of the factories do not have the required waste management.
Experts say air pollution kills about seven million people worldwide each year. Contaminated air enters the lungs and gradually weakens, which accelerates the death of respiratory problems. Coronavirus pandemic has been added to air pollution.
The main target of this virus is the lungs. Due to this, there is a high risk of increasing various diseases, including cough, asthma, and shortness of breath.
On November 18, 2020, at 5 pm, the air quality at Saver was 167, and at Trishal’s was 162, according to AQI’s data at 5 pm. On the other hand, there were 153 in Manikganj and 139 in Dhaka. Even when everything is quiet at night, the level of pollution increases.
At 8 pm on November 18, 2020, the weather index was 234 in Trishal, 190 in Dhaka, and 180 in Savar. On November 20, 2020, at 4 pm, it was 190 in Savar, 185 in Manikganj, 181 in Dhaka, and 165 in Trishal. It was seen at 5 pm on Saturday, 233 in Dhaka, 230 in Savar, 169 in Manikganj, and 168 in Trishal.
According to the US AQI ranking, Dhaka was ranked third in the world in the list of air pollution cities on November 21, 2020, with an air quality index of 197. The world’s most polluted city was Bishkek, the capital of Kyrgyzstan, with an air index of 241. There were 203 in Kolkata, 177 in Kuwait City, and 164 in Mumbai.
Ziaul Haque, Director of the Department of Environment (Air Management), said, ‘Dry weather increases dust in the air, air pollution also increases.
The air around Dhaka is more polluted due to brick kilns. Various activities, including regular campaigns, are being conducted to keep them within the rules.
The ground of air pollution in Savar, a suburb of the capital Dhaka, mostly cause by solid waste is being dumped in the low-lying areas along the sides of Highways and branch roads of the entire Upazila.
The waste also includes harmful plastics, polythene, and chemicals. Occasionally these wastes are burned with fire. Then black smoke filled the whole area. Besides, projects like tannery and textile have already been shifted to Savar.
Besides huge factories like ceramics, automobiles, pharmaceuticals, biscuit and bread factories, paint factories, cold storages, oil factories, welding factories, sawmills, shoe factories, soap factories, mosquito coil factories, knit and oven, washing, dyeing packaging, etc. are situated at Saver.
There are such factories. Black smoke from cluttered vehicles is continually polluting the air. At least 50 illegally constructed brickfields in and around Aminbazar are causing severe air pollution.
The environment around the leather industry area of Savar is also under threat now. The waste is stored in piles of various harmful wastes.
Sayemul Huda, Health and Family Planning Officer, Savar Upazila, said, ‘The effects of waste pollution and smoke are spreading to the people like skin diseases, respiratory problems, lung infections, and cancer. Especially children and pregnant women are the biggest victims of air pollution.
There are about 80 brickfields in Trishal. However, the number of brick kilns with the Department of Environment’s approval and renewal will not exceed 10. Wood is being used instead of coal in the lowlands. As a result, the surrounding environment is being covered with black smoke. As a result, many have been forced to relocate their homes.
It can be seen on the ground that the sky is covered with black smoke in 10-12 brick kilns in Biara village of Balipara Union. The same situation is from the Ragamara Junction of Dhaka-Mymensingh highway to Rampur connecting road.
Apart from this, the environment is obsessed with the smoke of industries and factories built in Amirabari, Harirampur, and Mathbari Unions. Most of the factories are polluting the environment by burning their waste.
Hundreds of crusher mills in Trishal Upazila produce fish meal by blowing dust and dried fish, meat bone, maize, and husk. On the Dhaka-Mymensingh highway, stones are broken for road work every day.