People, Environment

noticeable improvement in Alborz Air Quality

Around 62% of Alborz’s air pollution come from mobile sources.Around 62% of Alborz’s air pollution come from mobile sources.

Alborz Province’s Department of Environment has reported a noticeable improvement in air quality, attributing the change to measures taken by the government and local authorities.

According to Hossein Mohammadi, the head of Alborz DOE, the provincial capital Karaj experienced 295 “clean” and “healthy” days until Feb. 27 in the current Iranian year that ends on March 20, which shows a 35% increase compared with the same period of last year.

Based on World Health Organization standards, an air quality index of 0-50 signifies a clean day, while 51-100 is considered healthy, IRNA reported.

“Distribution of Euro-4 standard gasoline and improving the quality of fuel used in urban systems, combined with replacing liquid fuel with gas in around 800 production units across the province over the past three years, have helped a lot,” he said.

Mohammadi said mobile sources (e.g. vehicles) make up around 62% of air pollution in the province, the bulk of which is caused by inner-city gridlocks and a smaller portion by inter-city transportation.

“The remaining 38% are caused by stationary sources, such as industrial units,” he said.

“Besides transportation and industrial units, unsustainable and even illegal development in major cities contributes to air pollution, especially in colder months.”

Despite Mohammadi’s comments, locals say Karaj has been experiencing smoggy days lately.  

With the drop in temperature, a phenomenon known as inversion occurs during which cold air underlines warm air at higher altitude, trapping air pollutants in the city and causing heavy smog.

Provincial officials say 18% of the entire country’s traffic passes through Alborz as it connects 14 provinces, mostly in the northern regions. Reportedly, the volume of traffic that goes through Alborz exacerbates the problem.

The province usually experiences chaotic congestion. A large number of residents of the province travel to Tehran everyday for work, clogging the three major highways linking the two.

The government cannot fight air pollution alone and success will come with the active contribution of the society.


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