Mongolia bans burning raw coal to curb pollution

April 22, 2023 7:26 am32 commentsViews: 233

Magnolia’s Ulaanbaatar is the coldest capital city in the world where the temperature drops down to even 20 degrees Fahrenheit below zero at night. In past three decades the population here has nearly tripled but its infrastructure has not been synced appropriately. The 1.4 million people take the help of burning raw coal at home to stay warm and this result with extreme air pollution during the winter months.

Mongolia bans burning raw coal to curb pollution

The high coal dependency in Ulaanbaatar is wreaking havoc on the health of Mongolians. The smog over the city settles like a low-lying cloud. The typical worshipped sky from below cannot be seen. A blanket of gray is all across.

The problem is multiplied with emission from coal-fired power plants and exhaust pipes of hundreds of thousands of cars.

More to this, the pollution is further worsening geographically as a thermal inversion effect is created at the bottom of the valley. A cool air layer gets trapped below the warm air. This leads to keeping the pollutants near to the ground level.

The ger district is to be blamed the most from where 80 percent of the pollution comes. The place is Gers are circular, one-room homes which are made of felt wrapped around a wooden frame. These are mostly used by herders who move from place to place and the homes can be disassembled within an hour. A chimney always pokes through a flap at the top of the homes.

It is found about 200,000 gers burn 600,000 tons of raw coal every winter to keep their homes warm.

To overcome the pollution the government has put a ban on raw coal use. Let’s wait till winter comes and watch how effective would be the order.


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