torsdag 25. november 2021

Pakistan orders Monday closure of schools and offices in Lahore to cut smog

Pakistan has ordered private offices and schools to remain closed on Mondays in Lahore in the hope that a three-day weekend will help reduce toxic levels of smog in the country’s second-largest city. The directive, issued by Punjab relief commissioner Babar Hayat Tarar, aimed to act “as a preventive and speedy remedy” during the winter smog season and will last until 15 January.

Lahore was temporarily declared the most polluted city in the world by an air quality monitor earlier on Wednesday, as residents complain of shortness of breath, stinging eyes and nausea from thick, acrid pollution. Last week, the air quality index in the city of about 12 million people was ranked at 348, much above the hazardous level of 300, according to IQAir, the Swiss technology company that operates the AirVisual monitoring platform. Since then, Lahore has been overtaken by Delhi, India, which ranked at 422. The number is a calculation based on the level of several pollutants in the air.