Air pollution is a major problem confronting Pakistan, with cities like Lahore and Karachi ranking among the most polluted worldwide. The greater level of air pollution is a danger to human health. According to World Health Organisation (WHO), air pollution is responsible for millions of deaths worldwide every year. An estimated 128,000 Pakistanis die annually from air pollution-related illnesses (GAHP).

Mostly transportation and the widespread use of low-quality fuel are the biggest factors contributing to air pollution. Many vehicles in Pakistan still use a type of highly polluting Sulphur-laden gas, which is compounding the problem of air pollution. Transportation alone is responsible for 25% of carbon emissions in Pakistan. Not only that industrial policies and practices in Pakistan also compound the problem. Burning of tires to power factory units and brick kilns, and exposure to smoke from factories also pollute the air mostly.

To control air pollution and improve the quality of life we can switch to Euro 5 emissions standards for all new vehicles although the share of such vehicles in the country is still very low. Heavy taxes on the use of such vehicles are discouraging people from buying and using them. Urging factories to install new technologies to lower air pollution is the only option we can move fastly.

MOHAMED SAJIDH,

Sri Lanka.