ISLAMABAD - The air quality of the federal capital on Wednesday was recorded healthy as hazardous air pollutants were far below the permissible limits in the atmosphere due to reduced vehicular traffic.

The air quality data has been collected by the Pakistan Environmental Protection Agency (Pak-EPA) which monitors air pollutants ratio for 24 hours based on three intervals of eight hours of data collection from different locations.

The Pak-EPA data revealed that the air quality throughout the three intervals of data monitoring remained low as the pollutants were far less than the permissible limits of national environmental quality standards (NEQS).

The hazardous air pollutant particulate matter of 2.5 microns (PM2.5) which was a lethal atmospheric contaminant remained at 17.63 microgrammes per cubic meter on average.

The PM2.5 is generated through combustion of an engine, industrial emissions, burning garbage or inflammable material, and dust blew up by fasting moving cars plying on non-cemented patches of the roads.

However, a slight jump in previous days was mainly due to congestion of automobiles plying on the roads owing to Ramzan timings during the peak working hours, he added.

The nitrogen dioxide (NO2) and sulphur dioxide (SO2) were recorded below the permissible ratio as they were recorded at 6.57 and 20.46 microgrammes per cubic meter in the past 24 hours in the atmosphere against the NEQS of 80 and 120 microgrammes per cubic meter respectively.

These effluents were mainly produced during the operational activities of industrial plants and factories that were already under control, he said.

He urged the masses with respiratory diseases and other critical heart or lungs diseases to avoid prolonged outdoor visits and wear face coverings and goggles when the air quality is unhealthy while venturing outdoors.