Pakistan and India dominate air pollution database of WHO

Pakistan and India dominate air pollution database of WHO

Currently, agricultural burning adds to the air pollution issues across Pakistan and India, especially in the north. The region has 16 among the 20 most polluted cities in the global air pollution database of the World Health Organization (WHO). However, are they the most polluted places in the world ever recorded? Although lack of measurements makes historic comparisons difficult, we have some clues.

More than 200 years ago, Benjamin Franklin was one of the first scientists who studied electricity in the atmosphere. Air pollution also changes the electrical properties of our air, although lightning is the most obvious manifestation.

In 1790, electrical measurements near Hyde Park suggested the particle pollution of the 18th-century London was about half the annual average in the most polluted cities in India in the present.

Air pollution is a huge problem in India, killing more than 1 million in the country every year, according to researches. According to the IQAir report, on average, its cities exceed WHO guidelines for the amount of particulate pollution (PM2.5) in the atmosphere by up to 500 precent.

Meanwhile, in Pakistan, around 135,000 deaths are attributed to air pollution every year, making it the top cause of sickness and death smog. The country spends about 5.88% of GDP or $47.8 billion on solving air pollution issues. During some past decades, the United States, the United Kingdom, and Japan have successfully enforced policies to lessen air pollution and accentuate that today’s air pollution need not be tomorrow’s fate.

Things had deteriorated by 1900. Measurements of atmospheric electricity at Kew show that air pollution in London was similar to the worst Indian cities nowadays.

However, the UK was home to 44 million people in the 1920s and bout 400 million people are exposed to the poor air in the Ganges River basin on north India, making it a far larger air pollution crisis.

War tensions between India – Pakistan will continue?

At least two factors are thought to have influenced India’s position change. One was an election scheduled for May, in which Modi’s failure to avenge the death of Indian soldiers could cost him at the elections. The famous aggression of Indian television and social media networks may have prompted the government to take decisive action.

The second is the growing isolation of Pakistan. President Trump refused to provide hundreds of millions of dollars in security assistance because of Pakistan’s failure to curb militant groups to attack US forces in Afghanistan.

However, some analysts say the picture is getting darker.
The impact of India’s attack has yet to be determined. Indian officials suggested that they had targeted the supposed training facility used by Jaish-e-Muhammad. Pakistan declared an air raid on an uninhabited forest.

The next day, Pakistani fighters attacked Indian jets through Kashmir. During the gunfight, each party claimed to have shot down the aircraft of the other party.

Happymon Jacob, security expert and professor at Jawaharlal Nehru University in New Delhi, said that the Indian side seemed surprised after their aircraft was shot down. According to Jacob, this is more like the action driven by the political situation before the election than the outcome of the military plan.

While no country has criticized Indian attacks, Jacob said that New Delhi would be wrong to see Pakistan completely isolated. Trump’s reconciliation efforts with the Taliban demand Pakistan’s cooperation in bringing leaders to the negotiating table.

With the anti-Indian attitude rising in Kashmir, the area is mostly Muslim, the Indian force is attacked again is only a late matter.

“Maybe in the next confrontation, we will see a military conflict instead of retaliation” said Professor Chellaney of the Strategic Research Center.