Govt taking emergency measures to reduce ‘Smog intensity’ this year: Director RMC

ISLAMABAD, Oct 8 (APP):Director Regional Meteorological Center (RMC) Muhammad Ajmal Shad on Tuesday assured that the Punjab government has taken a series of steps to reduce smog conditions in country next year.

Talking to private news channel, he said the intensity of smog in Punjab would also be reduced as compared to previous years as government is taking war footing steps to overcome the burden of smog during the current winter season.

He said government to implement an air quality index with health advisory and pollution emergency measures government has already launched a plantation drive in country as per vision of Prime Minister Imran Khan to encourage people to plant trees all around the country to combat climate change issues.
He said Under Section 144, the burning of crop residue and garbage would be banned and coal-fired brick kilns closed from October to December.

He said Punjab Chief Minister has formed a committee to examine the prevailing weather of dense smog in the cities and plains of Punjab.

Director said in order to mitigate the factors behind smog, there is a need to adopt preventive measure and increase mass level awareness campaigns in the country.

He said department has issued directions to all authorities to strictly implement earlier orders regarding the ban on burning of waste and fine on the emission of construction dust.

Deputy Director Environment Ali Ijaz also said like every year Foggy conditions are expected in plains of Punjab, upper Sindh and Peshawar division during morning/night hours but he hoped that the intensity of smog would be less than previous years.

He said every December, thick fog descends upon Punjab blocking out the winter sunshine, closing off the motorway after dusk and preventing flights from landing at the international airport at night.

There was a need for a comprehensive action plan to address worsening levels of pollution not only in Punjab but throughout the country in which NGOs and the media will have to play a pivotal role.He said smog and foggy weather not only affects health but also day-to-day business, adding, a huge wave of smog last year were engulfed mainly central Pakistan due to Pollution, our friendly neighbor farmers and lesser rainfall; affecting visibility, forcing people to staying indoors & other health related problem.

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