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'International Day of Clean Air for Blue Skies' Environment much cleaner in bygone days : Dr Sasheekumar

  Source: The Sangai Express

Imphal, September 07 2023: The National Program on Climate Change and Human Health, National Health Mission and Directorate of Health Services jointly organised the fourth annual 'International Day of Clean Air For Blue Skies' today at RD Wing, Lamphelpat, Imphal.

The event was conducted under this year's theme of "Together for Clean Air" .

Speaking as the chief guest, Dr Khoirom Sasheekumar Mangang, Director of Health Services, pointed out that nowadays clear skies are not often visible during the night time.

But in the past, the night sky used to be clearly lit up with bright stars as the environment was much cleaner.

               
                           International Day of Clean Air for Blue Skies

The emissions from the steadily increasing number of brick factories in Manipur has also contributed to the degradation of the environment, he said.

Thus, in the larger interest of mankind, he appealed against any activities that could harm the environment.

Addressing the gathering, Climate Change State Nodal Officer Dr Y Niveda Devi shared that the International Day of Clean Air For Blue Skies has been observed since 2020 under the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) .

She added that the day is observed with the goal of preventing and reducing air pollution and its harmful effects on human beings.

According to the United Nations, 99% of the world's population breathes polluted air.

It has been reported by the World Health Organisation that breathing polluted air leads to the premature death of roughly 7 million people all over the world annually.

Out of this figure, 3.2 million deaths are caused by indoor air pollution, she said.

Adding to this, she shared that while breathing, tiny pollutants enter people's bodies and penetrate their lungs and bloodstream.

From there, these minute particles cause inflammation of the lungs, chronic pulmonary disease, heart attack, stroke, lung cancer and so on.

Thus she stressed on the importance of spreading awareness about the effects of air pollution on the human body and also shared some tips to reduce one's exposure to pollutants.

She advised people to minimize the use of engine-powered vehicles for travelling short distances and instead encouraged them to either walk or use a bicycle.

She also advised against burning plastic waste and encouraged people to plant more trees and make their environment greener.

Meanwhile, Dr Hemanta, Additional Director, Health Services pointed out the high incidence of various communicable and non-communicable diseases brought on by climate change.

He urged people to take personal responsibility to keep their environment clean so that people can breathe clean air and maintain good health.

Stating that many developed nations have adopted the habit of riding bicycles, he opined that it is time to build cycle paths in Manipur to inculcate this good habit among the people.

He also pointed out the high levels of dust pollution in the State and fielded widespread blacktopping of roads as a possible solution to this problem.

It may be noted that O Sanahanbi, Additional Director, Health Services attended the event as the functional president with State Family Welfare Training Centre, Principal Doctor Gaipu as the guest of honour.