EMB-CAR clarifies misuse of data on Baguio air quality

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BAGUIO CITY  – The Cordillera office of the Environmental Management Bureau (EMB-CAR) underscored that the city’s air quality remains to be fair to good contrary to earlier rehashed reports that the city’s air quality is one of the worst in the country.

EMB-CAR Reynaldo S. Digamo criticized the alleged misuse of the data being gathered by the different ambient air quality monitoring machines installed in the different parts of the city and the conclusions derived from the data gathered for the purpose of ascertaining the overall air quality of the city.

He claimed that it is unfair for certain sectors to conclude that the air quality of the city is bad using the data gathered from the ambient air quality monitoring machine right in the heart of the central business district area because the data gathered in the area is only applicable to the air quality in the said place.

While it is true that the range of the air quality in the central business district area is from good to fair, the EMB-CAR official pointed out that it is not again proper to use the data to conclude that the air quality in the city is bad for the whole duration of the day because it is only during peak hours in the morning and in the afternoon that the air quality moves up to fair which is not even within the alarming state.

“We are saddened by the wrong interpretations being done by some sectors on the data we are able to generate from our existing ambient air quality monitoring machines installed in strategic areas around the city. We hope that individuals and groups wanting to get the real situation of the city’s air quality should inquire from us and not from anybody else because we are in possession of the actual data,” Digamo stressed.

He revealed that it is unfair to the local government to conclude that the city’s air quality is bad using a single data from a lone air quality monitoring machine because there is a need to also include the data generated from other air quality monitoring machines installed in other areas around the city before one can actually evaluate and analyze the overall air quality of the city.

According to him, it is impossible to declare that the city’s air quality is not good when the said situation only happens during peak hours of the day and not for the whole duration of the day.

Digamo added bad smoke being emitted from the increasing number of motor vehicles plying the city’s streets is the primary cause of the fair air quality being registered by the ambient air quality monitoring machine based in the central business district that is why appropriate measures must be done by the local government to contribute in efforts to sustain the improvement of the existing air quality.

The environment official asserted that overall, the city’s air quality is still good that is why all efforts to sustain the improvement in the air quality must continue to be aggressively implemented by concerned stakeholders for the benefit of residents and tourists alike who want to breathe fresh air to ensure better health.

The EMB-CAR is in charge of installing ambient air quality monitoring machines in the city to ascertain the state of air in the different parts of the city.

By Dexter A. See

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