Govt to set up Punjab Clean Air Commission to control pollution, smog


LAHORE: Punjab government has decided to set up Punjab Clean Air Commission to control pollution and smog, and in this regard, committees have been established at tehsil and district levels for the monitoring of measures to control environmental pollution.

As per the details, recommendations and proposals given by various government departments to prevent smog and pollution were discussed during a high-level meeting chaired by Punjab Chief Minister Sardar Usman Buzdar on Wednesday.

The meeting was told that brick kilns, as per court orders, would remain closed from October 20 to December 31. The ban on the burning of crops residue would be imposed across the province from October 1. It was decided to evolve an effective and people-friendly strategy for the closure of two-stroke engines, motorcycle rickshaws and smoke emitting vehicles.

A campaign would also be launched on social media to raise awareness about the damage caused to the environment by the burning of solid waste and a comprehensive mass media campaign would be designed to create awareness about the prevention of smog.

CM Buzdar, at the occasion, directed that the air monitoring equipment should immediately be repaired and the air quality systems in Lahore, Multan, Rawalpindi, Rahimyar Khan and Faisalabad should also be made functional at the earliest. He said that smog badly disrupted daily life, therefore, a sustainable policy to prevent it should be devised.

“SUPARCO needs to develop a system for in-time information about smog and other environmental issues,” he added.

Among the participants of the meeting were Federal Minister for Environment Amin Aslam, senior provincial minister Abdul Aleem Khan, provincial ministers Mian Aslam Iqbal, Sabtain Khan Niazi, Malik Nouman, Punjab IGP and secretaries of departments concerned.

The environment secretary also gave a detailed briefing to the meeting.