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Tackling Air Pollution
Posted on : 16 Aug 2018  Source of News: The Star Online

by Sharon Ling

KUCHING: International organisations and delegates will discuss ideas and solutions to air pollution at the 10th Better Air Quality conference to be held here in November.

The biennial conference is organised by Clean Air Asia and the Clean Air Forum Society of Malaysia with the Natural Resources and Environment Ministry and Natural Resources and Environment Board (NREB).

Clean Air Asia deputy executive director Glynda Bathan said air pollution was an important challenge facing the world and the region.

“Over 30 international and regional organisations will come together to discuss the solutions that Asia needs to address air pollution.

“These include technological innovations of how cities can manage air pollution, start-ups in air quality monitoring and solutions to reduce air pollution from transportation and industries, among others,” she told a press conference yesterday.

Bathan also said there would be a “high focus” on policies at the conference, with over 30 environmental ministry officers from the region expected to attend.

“Air pollution is not just a local problem, it is a regional and international problem. So there is a need to solve it in partnership with others,” she said.

Some 1,000 participants from 55 countries are expected to attend the conference, which will take place at Borneo Convention Centre Kuching on Nov 14-16.

NREB controller Peter Sawal said the conference was timely for discussing issues of relevance on air quality, particularly as Sarawak was currently experiencing hazy conditions.

“From our monitoring, there are a few local hotspots and quite a few across the border. Although we don’t expect to experience serious haze, we do expect that it will be a bit hazy in Sarawak due to the wind direction,” he said.

With the theme “Regional Action, Global Impact”, the conference will cover topics such as air quality and climate change, clean energy for better air quality and city solutions for clean air.

Speakers include City University Hong Kong’s chair professor of environmental chemistry Prof Peter Brimblecombe, atmospheric chemistry and air pollution professor from Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia Prof Mohd Talib Latif and Prof Jamal Hisham Hashim from the United Nations University- International Institute for Global Health.