Wednesday March 21, 2018 04:48 PM

Dhaka still among cities with worst air quality

Dhaka still among cities with worst air quality
Bangladesh faces a massive increase in air pollution during the October to March dry seasons, with February the worst month Mehedi Hasan/Dhaka Tribune

Lahore topped the index as the most polluted city with a score of 221

Dhaka still continues to rank among the cities that have the lowest quality of air in the world.

The air quality of Bangladesh’s capital city has improved with comparison to the previous week.

Even though Dhaka ranked ninth in the US Air Quality Index on Saturday with a score of 160, the air quality again dropped on Sunday morning.

In the US Air Quality Index (AQI), measured at 9am, Dhaka received a score of 172. On Friday, the city was ranked as the second most polluted in the world with a score 443.

According to data available from a smartphone application named AirVisual, which shows the user real-time air pollution index of any city across the globe, Dhaka’s score signifies unhealthy air quality.

Lahore topped the index as the most polluted city with a score of 221.

Earlier while talking to the Dhaka Tribune, Department of Environment Director (Air quality management) Md Ziaul Haque said: “The air quality in Dhaka will continue to remain like this throughout March.

“However, the quality of air will improve during the monsoon season.”

The United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) developed the Air Quality Index to report air quality. This AQI is divided into six categories, indicating increasing levels of health concern.

An AQI value over 300 represents hazardous air quality and below 50 the air quality is good.

The index is based on the five criteria pollutants regulated under the Clean Air Act– ground-level ozone, particulate matter, carbon monoxide, sulfur dioxide, and nitrogen dioxide.

The AQI debuted in 1968, when the National Air Pollution Control Administration undertook an initiative to develop an air quality index and to apply the methodology to Metropolitan Statistical Areas.

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