The air quality in Dhaka is ‘moderate’ this morning as few vehicles are on the road because of the May Day holiday.
With an air quality index (AQI) score of 82 at 10:43am Monday, Dhaka ranked 18th in the list of cities around the world having the worst air quality, reports UNB.
An AQI score between 50 and 100 is considered ‘moderate’ with an acceptable air quality. However, there may be a moderate health concern for a very small number of people who are unusually sensitive to air pollution.
Nepal’s Kathmandu, Indonesia's Jakarta and Vietnam's Hanoi occupied the first three spots in the list, with AQI scores of 153, 151 and 137, respectively.
An AQI score between 101 and 200 is considered 'unhealthy', particularly for sensitive groups.
Similarly, an AQI between 201 and 300 is said to be 'poor', while a reading between 301 and 400 is considered 'hazardous', creating serious health risks for the residents.
In Bangladesh, the AQI is measured based on five criteria pollutants — Particulate Matter (PM10 and PM2.5), NO2, CO, SO2 and Ozone.
Dhaka has long been grappling with air pollution issues. Its air quality usually turns unhealthy in winter and improves during the monsoon.
Air pollution consistently ranks among the top risk factors of death and disability worldwide.
Breathing polluted air has long been recognised as a factor increasing a person’s chances of developing a heart disease, chronic respiratory diseases, lung infections and cancer, according to several studies.
As per the World Health Organization (WHO), air pollution kills an estimated seven million people worldwide every year, largely as a result of increased mortality from stroke, heart disease, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, lung cancer and acute respiratory infections.