Date
25 September 2017
In this file picture, Hong Kong's Victoria Harbor is shrouded in smog. Sunday's pollution was the worst since a new index was launched in late 2013. Photo: Bloomberg
In this file picture, Hong Kong's Victoria Harbor is shrouded in smog. Sunday's pollution was the worst since a new index was launched in late 2013. Photo: Bloomberg

Hong Kong chokes on worst air pollution since key index

Hong Kong’s air quality was the worst in more than six months Sunday, Apple Daily reported, citing data from the Environmental Protection Department (EPD) website.

The Air Quality Health Index showed serious pollution levels in all but two roadside-monitoring stations including those in Central, Causeway Bay and Mong Kok, the worst reading since the index was introduced at the end of 2013.

The reading came in at 10+, double the normal standard, and was blamed on heavy ozone pollution and light winds which could not help dissipate the airborne particulates.

That prompted the EPD to raise a public health warning, especially for people with heart disease or respiratory illness, to avoid outdoor activity.

More than 100 people were treated in hospitals for dizziness and heart problems and more than 1,400 sought help from the Senior Citizen Home Safety Association, the report said.

Pollution can only be reduced if Hong Kong and neighboring Shenzhen cooperate to cut emission, a local expert at the World Green Organization was quoted as saying.

By Sunday night, the pollution index had fallen after heavy rain. The Hong Kong Observatory expects more rain in the coming days to ease smog and air pollution.

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TL/AC/RA

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