Subscribe to our free daily newsletters
. Earth Science News .




Subscribe to our free daily newsletters



FROTH AND BUBBLE
'My eyes are burning': Delhi half marathon goes ahead despite smog
By Abhaya SRIVASTAVA
New Delhi (AFP) Nov 19, 2017


Tens of thousands of runners Sunday choked through smog for the Delhi half marathon, ignoring dire health warnings from doctors who fought for the controversial race in the heavily polluted capital to be postponed.

More than 30,000 people, some sporting pollution masks, braved a hazy morning to run through the Indian capital despite almost two weeks of hazardous smog that forced schools shut for several days.

The US embassy website Sunday showed levels of the smallest and most harmful airborne pollutants hovered near 200 -- eight times the World Health Organization's safe maximum -- for the duration of the 13.1 mile (21 km) race.

Some athletes complained of side effects from the polluted conditions which worsened as amateur runners -- the bulk of Sunday's competitors -- huffed and puffed around Delhi's smoggy streets later in the morning.

"My eyes are burning, my throat is dry. I have a running nose," said running enthusiast Rohit Mohan, a 30-year-old from the southern city of Bangalore who was among the minority donning a mask.

"It's been terrible since I landed here yesterday."

Others expressed frustration at being forced to take precautions unnecessary elsewhere, like wearing masks that filter pollutants but also restrict breathing.

"It's obviously much harder to breathe, so you're not doing your best here, and you can't take it off," Abhay Sen, 30, told AFP.

"Makes you think whether you want to do this again or not."

But the overwhelming majority ran without masks and expressed relief Delhi's atrocious air -- recently so bad doctors declared a public health emergency -- had lowered to levels considered merely "unhealthy".

"It's bright and pleasant. We are simply loving it," said 28-year-old runner Saikat Banerjee, despite the high level of airborne pollutants.

- Scared to run -

Race organisers declared the event an unequivocal success that "lived up to its legacy of being the world's most prestigious half marathon".

Birhanu Legese of Ethiopia, who won the men's race Sunday, said elite competitors "were scared" before the race but the pollution was "not that bad".

"I would say it was perfect to run," he said.

Ethiopia's Almaz Ayana won the women's event.

Other sporting events in the capital -- such as a top-level state cricket match Sunday and a recent international golf tournament -- have attracted less attention despite the hazardous levels of pollution.

Doctors warn running in severe pollution can trigger asthma attacks, worsen lung conditions and increase the risk of heart attacks and strokes.

A satirical video widely shared on social media in recent days showed a runner chain smoking cigarettes and inhaling exhaust fumes to prepare for the race.

The Indian Medical Association had asked the Delhi High Court to postpone the event, but were told organisers had taken proper precautions.

The course was sprayed with salted water to keep dust levels down. Light drizzle in the capital early Saturday also eased the toxic highs of last week.

But as the race progressed pollution readings climbed above 200 -- levels at which active people "should avoid all outdoor exertion", the US embassy warns.

"But here we are running a marathon," said Ashish Shakya, 31, who for his part decided not to race because of the unhealthy air and watched from the sidelines in a mask.

"Whatever health benefits we get from running are negated because of the smog. I chose not to run because of the health risks."

Pollution regularly spikes across north India and Pakistan at this time of year as farmers burn post-harvest crop stubble and cooler temperatures prevent pollutants from dispersing.

Delhi is often ranked one of the world's most polluted capitals, and local authorities have been blasted for failing to offset this annual scourge.

Some runners saw their participation Sunday as an act of defiance.

"I know pollution is bad and it can affect my health but I am still participating," said Sitam, who like many Indians goes by one name.

"I want to send a message to the government to do something for fitness enthusiasts and ensure a pollution-free environment for them."

FROTH AND BUBBLE
Pakistan indifferent as smog kills more people than militancy
Islamabad (AFP) Nov 16, 2017
The toxic smog that has covered parts of Pakistan for weeks has exposed official torpor over rampant pollution that has killed thousands more people than have died in years of militancy. The polluted air that has lingered in Islamabad in recent days was finally dispelled by rain this week, bringing the surrounding Margalla Hills into view once again. In Lahore, where the situation was mo ... read more

Related Links
Our Polluted World and Cleaning It Up


Thanks for being here;
We need your help. The SpaceDaily news network continues to grow but revenues have never been harder to maintain.

With the rise of Ad Blockers, and Facebook - our traditional revenue sources via quality network advertising continues to decline. And unlike so many other news sites, we don't have a paywall - with those annoying usernames and passwords.

Our news coverage takes time and effort to publish 365 days a year.

If you find our news sites informative and useful then please consider becoming a regular supporter or for now make a one off contribution.

SpaceDaily Contributor
$5 Billed Once


credit card or paypal
SpaceDaily Monthly Supporter
$5 Billed Monthly


paypal only

Comment using your Disqus, Facebook, Google or Twitter login.

Share this article via these popular social media networks
del.icio.usdel.icio.us DiggDigg RedditReddit GoogleGoogle

FROTH AND BUBBLE
Dimming Sun's rays to cool planet will affect storms too: study

Hundreds of Haitians protest government corruption

Head of Puerto Rico power authority resigns

UN urges end to Myanmar attacks against Rohingya

FROTH AND BUBBLE
Study explains how droplets can levitate on liquid surfaces

Research highlights ethical sourcing of materials for modern technology

The environmental implications of 3-D printing

A gel that does not break or dry out

FROTH AND BUBBLE
Nepal scraps mega hydropower deal with Chinese firm

New islands could solve Bangladesh land crisis: experts

How a 'shadow zone' traps the world's oldest ocean water

Researchers use forensic science to track turtles

FROTH AND BUBBLE
A new timeline for glacial retreat in Western Canada

Research shows ice sheets as large as Greenland's melted fast in a warming climate

Hot News from the Antarctic Underground

Chinese icebreaker steams for Antarctica in polar power play

FROTH AND BUBBLE
Peruvian farmer scores small win in court over German energy giant

Weed-killer prompts angry divide among US farmers

Cover crops shield soil from extreme temps

Sensors applied to plant leaves warn of water shortage

FROTH AND BUBBLE
Quake-stricken Iranians vent anger at former president

S. Korea quake leaves dozens injured, 1,500 seeking shelter

Greek flooding toll reaches 19, as more bodies found

Aid slow to reach quake-hit Iranian villages; Israel offers help

FROTH AND BUBBLE
Virginia Tech explore causes of land cover change in African savannas

Soldiers held without trial threaten 'new Gambia' reputation

Climate change and neglect threaten Senegal's Saint Louis

Army takes over Zimbabwe: What we know

FROTH AND BUBBLE
High cognitive ability not a safeguard from conspiracies, paranormal beliefs

Chimp study reveals how brain's structure shaped our evolution

Study shows video games could cut dementia risk in seniors

Put your head inside a brain




Memory Foam Mattress Review
Newsletters :: SpaceDaily :: SpaceWar :: TerraDaily :: Energy Daily
XML Feeds :: Space News :: Earth News :: War News :: Solar Energy News






The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2017 - Space Media Network. All websites are published in Australia and are solely subject to Australian law and governed by Fair Use principals for news reporting and research purposes. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA news reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. All articles labeled "by Staff Writers" include reports supplied to Space Media Network by industry news wires, PR agencies, corporate press officers and the like. Such articles are individually curated and edited by Space Media Network staff on the basis of the report's information value to our industry and professional readership. Advertising does not imply endorsement, agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. Privacy Statement