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A reminder for us all

  • Published at 08:00 pm March 30th, 2020
Pollution_air pollution
Photo: BIGSTOCK

It is indeed possible for us all to undo the gross levels of air pollution that we generate

Covid-19 continues to wreak havoc on the health and well being of citizens around the world, overwhelming health care systems, and bringing economies close to a screeching recession.

During these most difficult times, it is even more difficult to look for an iota of positivity in the midst of all the problems everyone is going through.

However, there is indeed a silver lining to be found in these dark times: The rapidly improving air quality of urban areas all over the planet.

And Dhaka has been no different.

While it was not uncommon to see the capital’s Air Quality Index (AQI) regularly close to, or over, 300 in the recent past -- which made the air hazardous to breathe -- it stood at a respectable 68 at 2pm yesterday, showing just how drastic the improvement in air quality has been as a result of Dhaka citizens opting to self-quarantine from the coronavirus.

Air pollution has continued to be one of the biggest problems to the overall health of the citizens of Dhaka, and is directly responsible for causing and exacerbating a whole host of medical issues and potentially shortening everyone’s lives.

That it took a global pandemic such as Covid-19 to put a check on the untenable levels of pollution in our city is unfortunate. Of course, the first priority right now is to fight the coronavirus to the best of our abilities.

However, let this be a reminder that it is indeed possible for us all to undo the gross levels of air pollution that we generate, and hope that -- once the threat of the coronavirus is behind us -- this will be a reminder that we take to heart.