• Monday, January 20, 2020

PM announces ambitious plan to curb smog, improve air quality

Discussion in 'Social & Current Events' started by Kabira, Dec 1, 2019.

  1. Kabira

    Kabira ELITE MEMBER

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    Announcing the government's ambitious plan to curb smog and improve air quality, Prime Minister Imran Khan on Saturday unfolded six points ranging from import of clean (environmental friendly) oil, using environment-friendly technology for crop burning, improving the quality of locally-produced oil, using latest technology for steel furnaces and brick kilns and urban forestry over 60,000 kanals in Lahore.

    Addressing a news conference here on Saturday accompanied by Chief Minister Sardar Usman Buzdar and Special Assistant Dr. Firdous Ashiq Awan, the premier said that smog was badly impacting the lives of citizens and would have devastating consequences in the future. “We have decided to take action against it through importing Euro 4 fuel, which will reduce the 90 per cent of the pollution. By 2020, we will switch to Euro 5, which is cleaner than Euro 4. Currently, about 50-60 percent imported oil is Euro-2 which caused air pollution, he said, adding: “The people will have to decide whether they are willing to afford a slight costly fuel to save the lives of their loved ones."

    PM Imran Khan said that oil refineries in the country will be given three years time to improve their fuel quality, otherwise these will be forced to shut down. Unfolding the measures, the PM said the government had decided to shift the focus of the auto industry towards electric vehicles. “We are holding talks with the car industries because they have certain reservations," he said. “An incentive policy will be introduced in 2020." He added that “buses that run across our cities will either be hybrid vehicles or electric. Or, we may insist on CNG."

    The PM said that crop burning in India and Pakistan as well as smoke from factories and brick kilns was all contributing factors to air pollution, the biggest contributor was vehicular smoke. He said that imported machinery will be brought in which will facilitate the farmers to make use of the post-harvest crop, making it possible for it to be sold. This will ensure that there is no need to burn the crop, drastically reducing the air pollution caused otherwise. He then spoke of steel factories and brick kilns which are the main sources of the hazardous, fine air particles known as PM2.5.

    The PM said that import duties on scrubbers will be removed, so that the steel factories can purchase them. Scrubbers are systems that use liquid (typically water) to remove particulates from industrial exhaust streams.

    Talking about smog and pollution in Lahore, the PM said that an urban forestry initiative will be undertaken in the city. “We have identified 60,000 kanals of land where we will grow trees so they can clean the city's air," the PM said.

    Some 70 per cent decline has been witnessed in the number of trees in Lahore during the last 10 years. The PM said, “70 per cent drop in tree cover has far-reaching consequences." With a dense tree cover, pollution particles are absorbed by the leaves. And with them being cut, the city had faced a great loss, he said.

    The premier said, “The impact will be slow; these are steps which should have been taken 20 years ago but no one bothered. We feel that every year people should see an improvement (in air quality). And in three years a significant difference will be seen," he added. Answering a question, the PM said the country has come out of difficult time and positive changes would be seen.

    To a question regarding non-payment of salaries to media men and their retrenchment, the PM asked Information minister Mian Aslam Iqbal to look into the matter and report.


    Copyright Business Recorder, 2019
     
  2. Samurai_assassin

    Samurai_assassin FULL MEMBER

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    I read that china built a huge air purifier as it is facing huge problems with toxic air pollution.
     
  3. Path-Finder

    Path-Finder ELITE MEMBER

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    70 thousand trees were cut down in Lahore! F#cking hell no wonder things are so bad.
     
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  4. shah_123

    shah_123 FULL MEMBER

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    All this Euro 4 5 6 oil, electric vehicles etc., are just empty words+ burning crops is not that much responsible -- The main culprit is traffic+ cutting down of trees and this resulted due to rural population from Punjab (and people from other regions) moving towards Lahore.

    The govts failed to provide necessities like hospitals, universities, jobs etc., in small cities, so naturally people migrated towards Lahore.
    Increased land prices+ improved roads network also contributed in migration.

    The land mafia (DHA the biggest culprit) has destroyed Lahore by turning agriculture land to housing societies.

    Lahore is no more, "loar loar ey".
     
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  5. Ali_kayani_ca

    Ali_kayani_ca FULL MEMBER

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    Lahore is ruined. Everyone now says we are from lahore.
     
  6. Jinn Baba

    Jinn Baba SENIOR MEMBER

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    IKs plan to plant more trees was a good initiative, should keep at it. He also announced for Lahore to now go vertical and to prevent any further encroachment of agricultural land - what happened to that? Lastly, improve public transport and reduce the number of cars or bikes on road + restrict high emission vehicles from coming on the road.

    And as someone above pointed out - improve infrastructure in other towns and cities and create more job opportunities there so less people migrate to Lahore.