Lahore has been declared the most polluted city in the world, with the Air Quality Index (AQI) reaching a hazardous level of 399.
The live AQI index places Lahore at the top globally regarding air pollution, with the Amir Town area recording an alarming AQI level of 444. This level of air quality is significantly beyond the hazardous threshold, where an AQI of over 300 is considered extremely dangerous to health.
The AQI in Lahore has reached levels that pose serious health risks. An AQI between 151-200 is deemed unhealthy, 201-300 is more harmful, and exceeding 300 is classified as hazardous. Health recommendations for the citizens include avoiding outdoor exercise, keeping windows closed to prevent dirty air from entering homes, wearing masks outdoors, and using air purifiers. Winter exacerbates the situation as the air becomes heavier, causing poisonous particles to descend, creating a dense layer of pollution comprising carbon and smoke.
Impact of Weather on Lahore’s Air Quality
The onset of winter in Lahore brings increased air pollution due to burning crop remnants, garbage, coal, and other materials.
The pollution typically remains high throughout the winter season. However, recent heavy rain in Lahore and its surrounding areas has brought some respite, significantly reducing the AQI from 468 to 119. This rainfall not only improved air quality but also led to colder weather. Unfortunately, it also caused waterlogging in low-lying areas and power outages in several parts of Punjab.