Dhaka Ranks Worst in Air Quality Index

Desk Report

Published: 18 Oct 2020, 12:33 pm

Dhaka, one of the world's most polluted cities, ranked worst on Sunday morning in the Air Quality Index ( AQI), reports UNB.

At 10:24 am it had a score of 188. The air was defined as 'unhealthy'.

Everyone may start to feel health effects when the AQI value is between 151 and 200. More severe health effects can be encountered by members of vulnerable groups.

Lahore of Pakistan and Delhi of India took the second and third spots in the list with scores of 178 and 176 respectively.

The AQI, a daily air quality monitoring index, tells individuals how clean or unhealthy the air in a certain city is and what health consequences might be a problem for them.

In Bangladesh, the AQI is based on five criteria pollutants - Particulate Matter (PM10 and PM2.5), NO2, CO, SO2 and Ozone.

World’s most polluted country

According to an IQAir AirVisual survey, Bangladesh topped the list of the world's most contaminated countries in 2019 for PM2.5 exposure.

Based on data from the world's largest integrated network for real-time air quality data, the 2019 World Air Quality Report incorporates efforts from thousands of projects run by individuals, communities, enterprises, non-profit organisations and governments.

It includes only PM2.5 (fine particulate matter) data as acquired from ground-based air quality monitoring stations with high data availability.

The study focused on the concentrations of two pollutants, in particular: small particulate air contamination (particulate matter measuring less than 2.5 microns in aerodynamic diameter or PM2.5) and ozone detected near ground level (tropospheric ozone), in order to control outdoor air quality.

This evaluation also tracked household air pollution exposure from burning fuels such as coal, wood, or cooking biomass.

Air pollution consistently ranks among the top risk factors for death and disability worldwide. Breathing polluted air has long been recognized as increasing a person’s chances of developing heart disease, chronic respiratory diseases, lung infections, and cancer, according to the report.

Air pollution kills an estimated seven million people worldwide per year, as per the World Health Organization (WHO), primarily as a result of increased mortality from stroke, heart disease , chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, lung cancer and acute respiratory infections.

More than 80 percent are exposed to air quality levels that surpass WHO guideline limits in urban areas that control air pollution, with low- and middle-income countries most at risk, WHO estimates.

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