The air pollution level in Dhaka recorded ten times higher in 2021 compared to 2020
Air pollution nowadays has become a burning issue which affects people more or less in every country. The term air pollution refers to the contamination of air due to the presence of substances in the atmosphere that are harmful to humans and other living beings and cause damage to the climate. There are many different air pollutants, such as gases, particulates, and biological molecules.
Bangladesh, specifically her capital Dhaka, is one of the worse bearers of Air pollution consequences. The average air pollution at Dhaka increased by 9.8 percent in 2021 compared to 2020. According to the Air quality index (AQI), the pollution level in 2020 was 145, which rose to 159.01 in 2021.
The information reveals by a survey conducted by the Center for Atmospheric Pollution Studies (CAPS) in the Department of Environmental Sciences at Stamford University, Dhaka, Bangladesh.
According to the survey, the average level of the Air Quality Index (AQI) in January 2020 was 235.1. In January 2021, it increased to 261.06, which is 11.3 percent more than the consecutive two years. Similarly, in February 2020, it was 220.5. In 2021, it increased to 231.4. the study further listed Abdullapur, Mirpur, and Shahbag as the most polluted areas in Dhaka.
Ahmed Kamruzzaman Majumder, director of CAPS and chairman of Stamford University’s Department of Environmental Sciences, said, ” We were surveying air pollution levels in 10 different areas of Dhaka. The most polluted area was Abdullahpur, followed by Mirpur, then Shahbag.”
“Many of the development activities postponed due to Corona. They have started again in full force. Besides, cars that were lying at home for long have hit the road without any servicing, which also has a contribution to increase pollution,” he added.
Abdul Matin, Executive vice-president of Bangladesh Paribesh Bachao Andolon (BAPA), said, “Air pollution is on the rise for four main reasons – first, development work. Second: Private construction. r three brick kiln and four is blowing dust while cleaning the city.”
“After Corona, the government development work is going on at a fast pace. We are not against development. But if the countries of the developed world can take measures to prevent pollution while doing this, why can’t we? Awareness is also needed to raise when doing personal construction work,” he added.
“Besides, it is important to stop the use of low-quality coal in brickfields. Coal contains so much sulfur that it mixes with the air and causes air pollution tremendously. Meanwhile, he added that sweeping the streets, cleaning the shops, and using modern technology makes it possible to solve the dust.
However, environmentalists say that it is possible to reduce pollution levels using modern technology with little initiative and awareness. There is no alternative but a combined effort of the individual, stakeholder, and policymakers.