Date
26 May 2017
Hong Kong suffered higher than normal pollution levels on Wednesday afternoon, with readings hitting up to 10 in Causeway Bay and Central. Photo: HKEJ
Hong Kong suffered higher than normal pollution levels on Wednesday afternoon, with readings hitting up to 10 in Causeway Bay and Central. Photo: HKEJ

Stronger wind expected to ease high-risk air pollution

High-risk air pollution in Hong Kong is expected to ease on Thursday as the dry northeast monsoon affecting southern China gets stronger, according to the Hong Kong Observatory

Hong Kong suffered higher than normal pollution levels on Wednesday afternoon, Ming Pao Daily reports.

Readings from air monitoring stations showed the Air Quality Health Index in most districts reached 8 or above, or “very high” health risk.

At some point, the index hit 10 in some stations in Causeway Bay and Central.

The Environmental Protection Department (EPD) said Hong Kong was affected by an airstream with higher background pollutant concentrations on Wednesday, with the light wind hindering dispersion of air pollutants.

In addition, the sunshine enhanced photochemical smog activity and the formation of ozone and fine particulates during daytime, resulting in high pollution.

At 4 pm. Wednesday, the concentration of PM2.5 — fine particles 2.5 microns or less in diameter — was 73 percent higher than the acceptable standard

Citing forecasts by the Observatory, the EPD said a stronger northeast monsoon will continue to bring generally fine weather to southern China in the next couple of days.

The wind is expected to increase from Thursday and reduce air pollution with improved dispersion, according to Headline Daily.

With the health risk index in the “very high” range or above, children, the elderly and those suffering from heart or respiratory illnesses are advised to reduce physical exertion and outdoor activities to a minimum or avoid such activities entirely.

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TL/AC/RA

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