Deep concerns over increase of air pollution in Kabul

KABUL (SW) – A number of Kabul residents complain about the increase in air pollution and say that the worsening air quality causes an increase in diseases.

Rafiullah Amini, who is a roadside vendor in Kabul city, says that the increase in air pollution has made him sick. “Personally, when I do business outside, sometimes I get sore eyes and sore throat due to air pollution, and this pollution made from dust causes me to get sick”, He added.

Wahidullah, another resident of Kabul, says that in a few days the air pollution will increase to such an extent that it will be difficult to breathe. “The air pollution has increased and in the next 20 days it may become worse and it will be very difficult to breathe.”

Jamshid, a resident of the second district of Kabul city, wants the relevant departments to control air pollution. He says: “We ask the authorities to control the filters and the buildings that use coal should have their filters checked.”

Meanwhile, a number of environmental experts consider the increase in population in Kabul city, the activity of industrial parks, drought, citizens’ use of coal and smoky objects as the main factors of air pollution.

Abdul Hadi Achakzai, an environmental expert, wants citizens to take part in reducing air pollution and wants the de-facto government to deal legally with the trades that cause air pollution.

However, officials of the National Environmental Protection Agency (NEPA) say that air pollution has increased in Kabul compared to the last two months.

He adds: “On some days when there is no wind, air pollution has been recorded up to 300 micrograms, and the air quality standard in Afghanistan has been set at 150 micrograms. We are trying to control the pollution by moving our Mobil teams in different parts of Kabul.”

However, the doctors say that air pollution intensifies the spread of infectious diseases.

Faridullah Omari, a doctor at the Infectious Diseases Hospital, says about the prevention of diseases caused by air pollution: “When we leave the house, we must use a mask, and if someone suffers from respiratory diseases, she/he must also wear a mask at home, and their personal stuffs should be separated.”

According to reports about the air pollution Kabul, the capital of the Afghanistan, is one of the most polluted capitals in the world.