Air pollution reaches this year’s highest point, likely to climb further if wildfires not tamed

KATHMANDU, APRIL 10: The air pollution in the country has increased today to reach this year’s highest level. The air pollution level climaxed due to the forest fires raging in various places of the country. Based on the Air Quality Index (AQI), the AQI of Kathmandu has reached 265 today. This puts Kathmandu at the top of the list of the most polluted cities in the world. The federal capital recorded an AQI of 200 yesterday

Environmentalists and meteorologists have expressed concern, citing that the air pollution might further go up with the continuing bushfires in several places of the country. Deputy director-general at the Department of Environment, Tara Dutta Bhatta said the air pollution in Kathmandu Valley has also suddenly peaked with the increasing instances of wildfires. He underscored the need for coordination among all the stakeholders in controlling the forest fires. “The pollution is increasing day by day. The State has to declare an emergency if the AQI reaches 300,” Bhatta said.