Air pollution has always been a bit of a problem in Joburg. Reasons given for the pollution was:
Dry autumn and winter months - when thermal inversions impede the westward flow of air and there is a resultant gold mine dust problem blowing off the mine dumps
Densely settled townships on the city’s periphery, where many residents still rely on coal for fuel
This is exacerbated due to these areas being ringed by the mine dump.
But this year I find that it is even worse than ever (look at the pic of Sandton in the morning). With some investigation (and phoning different Government areas for answers) – these are the findings:
Eskom is contributing more to Air Pollution due to higher output levels, due to higher demand for electricity
Road works all around Joburg has gridlocked traffic. They also contribute a big chunk of sending dust and dirt into the air – we all experience this (just remember the last time you got home after passing some road works – your newly washed car looked like it went through a sand storm)
On Highveld Stereo this morning a survey indicated that it takes the average Joburger twice as long to get to and from work than a year ago. This means double the fuel consumption and double the amount of pollution your car pumps into the atmosphere
Building Construction everywhere is also contributing to disturbed traffic cycles and increase dust in the air.
With all this going on (building, road works etc etc) and with the Roads being made smaller (the yellow line on the side disappearing in some instances) – also leads to more frequent accidents – contributing to gridlock traffic – contributing to more pollution
It looks like we are buggered for the next few years … hopefully we don’t get to a stage where we walking around with oxygen masks to survive in this vibrant city of ours
Please send me your comments