TRACEY DAVIES: No clearing the (Joburg) air
When SA weakened air pollution limits in 2020, it likely set a world record for regression on air pollution regulation. That makes it difficult to take seriously the latest promises of reform
Despite Covid’s resetting of business travel expectations, some trips remain unavoidable. Last Tuesday evening I flew into Joburg and was reminded how, when I made the trip more regularly, I used to be amazed every time I landed by the thick layer of filthy smog that pretty much permanently blankets the city, and the perplexing lack of indignation about it from its residents.
As I was writing this column on June 12, Swiss-based air quality technology company IQAir reported that Joburg’s air quality index (AQI) score was 175, on a scale of 0-500. An AQI score of 0-50 is “healthy”, 100-200 is “unhealthy”, 200-300 is “very unhealthy”, and above 300 is “hazardous”...