• Tuesday, Oct 26, 2021
  • Last Update : 05:44 pm

New Delhi launches campaign to curb toxic air pollution

  • Published at 05:44 pm October 6th, 2020
Delhi India air pollution
File photo: Tourists visit the India Gate under heavy smog conditions, in New Delhi on November 3, 2019 AFP

New Delhi has had 285,103 confirmed cases of the Covid-19, including 5,510 deaths

Authorities in New Delhi launched an anti-pollution campaign on Monday in an attempt to curb air pollution levels ahead of winter, when the capital is regularly covered in toxic haze, and warned that filthy air could make the coronavirus pandemic more dangerous.

The capital’s top elected leader, Arvind Kejriwal, said the government will start an anti-dust campaign, reduce smoke caused by agricultural burning and introduce a mobile application that will allow citizens to lodge photo-linked complaints against polluters.

“Polluted air can be life-threatening in view of the Covid-19 pandemic. Both affect the lungs,” Kejriwal said.

Health experts say high air pollution levels over a prolonged period have compromised the disease resistance of people living in New Delhi, one of the world’s most polluted cities, making them more susceptible to the coronavirus.

Earlier studies have also suggested that high levels of air pollution can make viral infections more dangerous.

It is estimated that more than a million Indians die every year because of air pollution-related diseases.

New Delhi has had 285,103 confirmed cases of the coronavirus, including 5,510 deaths.

Among the many Indian cities gasping for breath, New Delhi tops the list every year. Winters have become a time of health woes, when the city is covered with a toxic haze that obscures the sky and blocks sunlight. Pollution levels soar as farmers in neighboring agricultural regions set fire to clear their land after harvests and prepare for the next crop season.

Vehicle and industrial emissions, pollutants from firecrackers linked to festivals, and construction dust also sharply increase in winter, exacerbating the public health crisis.

Anumita Roychowdhury, executive director at the New Delhi-based group Centre for Science and Environment and an air pollution expert, said the causes of the capital’s poor air quality are well known, as are the actions needed to combat it.

But she said the steps needed to improve air quality aren’t being carried out at the right scale.

“It isn’t rocket science,” Roychowdhury said.

The national capital has often experimented with limiting the number of cars on the road, using large anti-smog guns and halting construction activity. But the steps have had little effect because neighboring state governments have failed to cooperate.

In November 2019, New Delhi was blanketed in a dark yellow haze for several days and air pollution hit record high levels, forcing schools to close and flights to be diverted.

Facebook 50
blogger sharing button blogger
buffer sharing button buffer
diaspora sharing button diaspora
digg sharing button digg
douban sharing button douban
email sharing button email
evernote sharing button evernote
flipboard sharing button flipboard
pocket sharing button getpocket
github sharing button github
gmail sharing button gmail
googlebookmarks sharing button googlebookmarks
hackernews sharing button hackernews
instapaper sharing button instapaper
line sharing button line
linkedin sharing button linkedin
livejournal sharing button livejournal
mailru sharing button mailru
medium sharing button medium
meneame sharing button meneame
messenger sharing button messenger
odnoklassniki sharing button odnoklassniki
pinterest sharing button pinterest
print sharing button print
qzone sharing button qzone
reddit sharing button reddit
refind sharing button refind
renren sharing button renren
skype sharing button skype
snapchat sharing button snapchat
surfingbird sharing button surfingbird
telegram sharing button telegram
tumblr sharing button tumblr
twitter sharing button twitter
vk sharing button vk
wechat sharing button wechat
weibo sharing button weibo
whatsapp sharing button whatsapp
wordpress sharing button wordpress
xing sharing button xing
yahoomail sharing button yahoomail