We now seldom see vehicles emitting black smoke but there are times when one or two dare the ire of law enforcement by using vehicles that obviously need to be parked in mechanic shops.
Environment awareness is most needed at this time when the city is faced with rapid urbanization. Trees are cut, farmlands and even slopes are cleared to pave way for subdivisions to accommodate the increasing population.
The cutting of trees and smoke emissions from vehicles and industries are seen as contributing factors to the rapidly depleting ozone layer. Global warming, one of the greatest threats to our existence on this planet, requires our immediate attention.
The Energy and Clean Air Project (ECAP) has identified the challenges it faces to address the issue: unhealthy levels of pollutants in the air sheds of major urban centers; high emissions from diesel-powered vehicles; dependence on carbon-burning transport fuels; predominant use of less efficient second-hand engines/less efficient 2-stroke engines by PUV; lack of proper vehicle maintenance among drivers; improper road behavior that aggravates traffic congestion and mobile-sourced emissions, and lack of public support for community actions on clean air.
The Clean Air Act has to be strictly implemented but policies alone do not address the worsening issue on climate change. Not everyone understands how this can affect the life of the community and how they contribute, through improper disposal of domestic wastes, to the problem.
Information is still the key in protecting our environment. It requires all of us – government agencies, drivers of vehicles, commuters – to be vigilant in securing a clean and safe environment for the next generation.