The Federal Ministry for Climate Change has decided to monitor smog in Punjab with the help of satellite, providing real-time data to the provincial government to help it to take steps to tackle the menace this winter.
It will also set up a special control room in Pakistan Space and Upper Atmosphere Research Commission (SUPARCO) where relevant departments would submit their reports on smog levels in Punjab daily.
Speaking in this regard, SAPM on Climate Change, Malik Amin Aslam, said that the ministry will ensure regular monitoring of smog, which becomes a health and environmental hazard in the province during winters.
He added that the ministry has also started a review of the measures taken by the Punjab government to curb smog from its sources including brick kilns, crop burning, vehicles emission, and steel mills.
The SAPM said that the provincial government has equipped farmers with much-needed technology to stop them from burning crop residue. Instead of burning the residue, the technology helps to convert it into organic fertilizer which improves the fertility of the land.
He added that the provincial government has also shifted thousands of brick kilns to a newer and more efficient zigzag technology.The SAPM said Pakistan has employed a comprehensive strategy to tackle the issue of smog. However, all of these efforts will be in vain until the Indian government cooperates and adopts similar measures to control smog in the country.
Real-time satellite monitoring detects the particulate matter, which makes up smog because its clouds can be easily seen from space for two reasons.
First, smog is thicker in the visual range, therefore, it reduces the contrast of objects below it or covers them completely. Second, unlike normal clouds, smog does not have a white color and has brown tones instead.