Vietnam warned its people to limit outdoor activities due to ‘unhealthy air’

Vietnam warned its people on Tuesday to limit outdoor activities because the air quality in the Southeast Asian country has persistently been at “unhealthy” levels for days.

The levels of hazardous small particles known as PM2.5 in the air at the country’s two largest cities, Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City, have been rising persistently since early last month, exceeding “Vietnamese standards”, the government said in a statement.

The government blamed the pollution on low rain and farmers burning rice crop remnants after the harvest to prepare for new plantings. Coal is also widely used for power generation in the country, reports Reuters.

Vietnam

Demonstrators protest during a climate change strike in front of the St. Joseph Cathedral in Hanoi, Vietnam

Air Visual – an independent online air quality index monitor – says Hanoi’s reading of PM2.5 has exceeded 300 micrograms per cubic meter at times, the worst in the world. On Tuesday, it showed PM2.5 levels at 180 in Hanoi and 86 in Ho Chi Minh.

The World Health Organization recommends an air quality standard for PM2.5 of no more than 10 micrograms per cubic meter.

Such pollution could become a political issue in Vietnam, where protests have been held in the past against the degradation of the environment. Communist-ruled Vietnam tolerates little dissent and protesters and activists are often prevented from gathering or charged with “causing public disorder”.

“Local people, especially children, the elderly, pregnant women and people with respiratory issues should refrain from traffic and outdoor activities,” the government said in the statement.

PM2.5 levels are forecast to stay high over the next days, particularly at night and early in the morning, it added.

“People should wear masks and goggles when going outdoor,” the government said in the statement.

Similar slash-and-burn farming practices have also led to forest fires in Indonesia that have created a choking haze across Malaysia and Singapore in recent weeks.

Avatar

This article has been posted by a News Hour Correspondent. For queries, please contact through [email protected]
No Comments

Translate this News

Join the Facebook Group

Click here to join the Facebook group of News Hour

Popular Posts

Advertisement

News of the Month

October 2019
S M T W T F S
« Sep    
 12345
6789101112
13141516171819
20212223242526
2728293031  
Scroll Up
%d bloggers like this: