|In the past few days, HCM City was covered with dense fog. Meteorological experts called it "dry fog", caused by air pollution. An alarming level of harmful substances in the air was recorded in the first six months of the year. — Photo tuoitre.vn
HCM CITY (VNS) — An alarming level of harmful substances in the air, especially carbon monoxide (CO), was recorded in the first six months of the year, according to the HCM City Environmental Measurement and Analysis Centre.
In the 2010-14 period, the volume of harmful substances actually declined, but since the beginning of the year the level of CO has increased around the city.
In addition, noise pollution was also at a higher level than in 2014 and exceeded the permitted level.
The total amount of dust in the air along roads had increased as well. It was 1.2-2.2 times more than the allowed level, especially in places with a high density of vehicles.
"Dust pollution is dangerous in Viet Nam, especially benzene, which comes from motorcycle exhaust," Dr Nguyen Dinh Tuan, former rector of the HCM City's Natural Resource and Environment University, was quoted as saying in Tuoi Tre (Youth) newspaper. To improve the situation, Tuan suggested the use of ‘green fuel', and urged the establishment of a unit to manage air pollution caused by transport.
"Now there are too many units responsible for this," he said.
"Dust pollution causes skin and respiratory ailments," said Dr Le Van Khoa, head of HCM City Polytechnic University's Environment Management department.
Khoa asked the city to identify all resources that produce air pollution, including industry, construction, energy, service and transportation services and activities.
"All solutions must be included in one detailed strategy with all industries, and with short-term and long-term solutions," Khoa said.
He said it was urgent to use green technology, develop public transport, restrict the use of private vehicles, create more space for bicycles and pedestrians, increase community awareness and set up an urban air information system.
Le Thai Duong, a resident in District 1, said: "I'm worried about the ‘fog' from polluted smoke and dust. The situation has seriously affected local residents' health and I hope local authorities act immediately to control the air pollution." — VNS