Jakarta is third most pol­luted

City con­tin­ues to climb up rank­ings for world’s worst air qual­ity

The Star Malaysia - - World -

JAKARTA: Any­one who wants to live a healthy life may have to con­sider mov­ing out of Jakarta, as the city con­tin­ues to climb up the rank­ings for the world’s worst air qual­ity.

Based on a real-time air qual­ity in­dex up­loaded to the Airvi­sual ap­pli­ca­tion at mid­day on Fri­day, Sept 15, Jakarta ranked third as the most pol­luted city in the world, af­ter Bei­jing and Dhaka, among 70 cities mea­sured across the globe.

In mid-Au­gust, the ap­pli­ca­tion showed that Jakarta was at the top of the list, fol­lowed by Ankara, Tur­key and La­hore, Pak­istan.

Res­i­dents in the In­done­sian cap­i­tal may have ex­pe­ri­enced the wors­en­ing air qual­ity due to hazy air and the sharp smell of ex­haust fumes from ve­hi­cles.

Fi­lani Olyvia, 25, a res­i­dent of Mam­pang Pra­p­atan, in South Jakarta, said she was wor­ried about her health be­cause she rides an ojek (mo­tor­cy­cle taxi) to work ev­ery day.

Green­peace In­done­sia re­vealed that air pol­lu­tion in Greater Jakarta, with its high ex­po­sure to a car­cino­genic pol­lu­tant called PM2.5, was three times higher than the max­i­mum “safe” level rec­om­mended by the World Health Or­gan­i­sa­tion of 25 mi­cro­grams per cu­bic me­tre.

Ac­cord­ing to re­search con­ducted by Green­peace from Jan­uary to June, the air in Greater Jakarta was con­sid­ered “un­healthy” and hazardous for res­i­dents, es­pe­cially chil­dren, preg­nant women and the el­derly.

“In gen­eral, there has been a sig­nif­i­cant in­crease in pre­ma­ture deaths re­sult­ing from strokes, heart dis­ease, res­pi­ra­tory in­fec­tions (or what the lo­cal au­thor­i­ties call ISPA) in chil­dren, lung can­cer and chronic lung dis­eases,” said Bon­dan An­driyanu, Green­peace cam­paign spokesman for cli­mate and en­ergy.

Us­ing the risk anal­y­sis from the Global Bur­den of Dis­ease Project con­ducted by the In­sti­tute for Health Met­rics and Eval­u­a­tion, Green­peace found that the great in­crease of peo­ple who suf­fered from pol­lu­tion-re­lated dis­eases oc­curred in ar­eas highly ex­posed to the pol­lu­tant.

To pro­tect them­selves against emis­sions of PM2.5, res­i­dents have been ad­vised by Green­peace to wear N95 sur­gi­cal masks, in­stead of reg­u­lar dis­pos­able masks.

“We also urge the gov­ern­ment to es­tab­lish a proper, pub­licly ac­ces­si­ble air qual­ity mon­i­tor­ing sys­tem for res­i­dents,” he said.

— AFP

Health

hazard: Haze shroud­ing the Jakarta skyline re­cently.

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