Sydney is chocking on extreme bushfire pollution

Sydney is chocking on extreme bushfire pollution
Source: https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2019-12-09/choking-smoke-blankets-sydney-as-wildfire...

Sydney is suffering due to bad air quality. A blanket-like thick smoke shroud is turning Sydney’s air into polluted air, and people are facing breathing problems. Many people from Sydney wrote online that they were chocking on the smoke. Even a lot of people said that last Tuesday they had to face the thickest haze. Also, it leads to the cancellation of the boat and ferry rides. Local people have described the situation as ‘insane’ and ‘apocalyptic’.  Over a week, the city is dealing with air, which already surpassed the hazardous level. Local people said that Tuesday was the worst smoke day yet, and previously, they were noticing fallen ash from the sky.

The reason for this thickest smoke

The reason for this thickest smoke is Australia’s bushfire. The closest fire is just an hour’s drive from greater Sydney. Nearly five million people live here. Bushfire has been affecting the country and sending dangerous smoke over populated areas. According to the officials, hospital admission has increased by 10%, and paramedics have already treated hundreds of people for their breathing problems. Another city, Adelaide, with nearly 1.3 million people, was also affected in the same way and forced to stay inside to breathe properly.

Harmful bushfire smoke

Prof Brian Oliver, an expert in respiratory disease from the University of Technology, Sydney, said that bushfire smoke is not as harmful as industrial pollution, yet it can harm. He also added that any smoke which gets produced as the by-product of burning something is terrible and harmful. Generally, it comes from natural sources like leaves, trees, and even ground vegetation and includes gases, small particles, and water vapor. And the gases include carbon dioxide, carbon monoxide, and nitrogen oxide. Sydney has received ultrafine particles, and these are very dangerous as they can travel vast distances on the wind.

The present condition of Sydney’s air

Fine particles are dangerous too. PM 2.5 particles are invisible to the human eye, but they are coated in harsh chemicals. They often coated with lead and can easily penetrate the lungs. PM 2.5 level of 8mg per cubic is Australia’s clean air standard. According to recent updates, its reading is now 734mg, and it is equivalent to burning nearly thirty-seven cigarettes. Associate Prof Oliver says people who live closer to blazes and firefighters’ exposure would have been ten to fifteen times higher. He also added that we need to feel for those people out there in those critical conditions.

Already a lot of people are facing breathing problems and chest tightness. Some have been admitted to the hospitals, and their treatment is continuing. Apart from serious conditions, nearly all people are feeling irritation in the nose, eyes, lungs, and throat. Older people and children are facing more issues. Asthma, lungs, and heart problems are worsened symptoms. To deal with the smoke, people are taking the help of standard face masks. Health authorities said that even those standard face masks are not capable of blocking fine particles.

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