You must have heard about it by now. A huge fog has engulfed Lahore, affecting visibility and forcing people to stay indoors.
However, its not just fog, but a man-made smog that’s caused by pollution and other man made circumstances.
This smog is a highly toxic and can cause serious respiratory problems for people who may find it difficult to breath all of a sudden. Smog can also hurt eyes and nose by causing irritation.
How Does a Smog Happen?
In Lahore, over the last past years, a smog descends every December. It is so thick that even airplane flights to Lahore are canceled as a result.
In the last 5 years, this smog has grown way worse, owing to poor air quality and high amount of pollution caused by vehicles and factories. The cutting down of trees and rapid industrialization has not helped matters as well, something that the development-focused authorities should do well to heed as well.
Lahore is now considered as one of the most polluted cities in Asia. In winter months, all the pollutants tend to collect in the lower level of the atmosphere due to rains, cold spells and dry condition.
Experts state that factories in India across Eastern Punjab are to be blame as well, given their reliance on coal use. The emissions and pollutants from there carry over to this side of the border and make things worse.
How to Combat Smog in Lahore?
If you are in Lahore or any adjoining areas, please be sure to keep these things in mind:
– Keep your windows closed. Be it your vehicle, office, home, etc. please ensure that the smog is not getting inside an enclosed room or space. Its a great idea to stay indoors until the smog dissipates.
– For those who need to travel from point A to B in this situation, here’s how they can minimize their exposure to smog – car owners and bikers should avoid congested areas where traffic jams happen i.e. road junctions. Car windows should be kept closed at all times. Bikers can take a route which has the least traffic obstructions.
– For people with asthma and/or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, have your inhaler with you at all times. Keep your doctor on speed dial if your condition has the potential to worsen.
– Are you a fitness-conscious person? Well then you will have to avoid doing strenuous physical activity that results in increasing breathing patterns. Having smog means the ground levels contain more ozone than usual.
An appeal to all Lahorites who are plying their vehicles on the road. They should not keep their engines running and be considerate of the environment and other people.
And last but not the least, as your civic duty as a citizen of Pakistan, please file a complaint with the Environmental Protection Agency here.
It must be mentioned here that Pakistan Meteorological Department has said that Smog will persist for another five days at least.
Image via Newsweek Pakistan