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In lands I never saw -- they say
Immortal Alps look down --
Whose bonnets touch the firmament --
Whose sandals touch the town --

Meek at whose everlasting feet
A myriad daisy play --
Which, Sir, are you and which am I
Upon an August day?

Emily Dickinson
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AM/PM Session - 8 August 2017 - Solutions for air pollution in Hanoi

NatashaTNatashaT Posts: 1,059 Teacher
We read an article about a possible solution to Hanoi´s air pollution problem - a new bus system, BRT (bus rapid transit):


Vocabulary Top 10:

ditch - to stop having or using something you no longer want or need; to get rid of something

dense - having parts that are close together; crowded with people or things

flimsy - easily broken, torn, etc. : not strong or solid

boom - to grow or expand suddenly; a rapid increase in growth or economic success

funded - to provide money for something

congested - too full or crowded with something (such as vehicles or people)

exacerbate - to make (a bad situation, a problem, etc.) worse

brouhaha - great excitement or concern about something

uptide - a small increase

engrained (usually spelt ´ingrained´) - existing for a long time and very difficult to change : firmly established

Is air pollution a problem in your city?

What can we do to prevent or protect ourselves from air pollution?


  • filauziofilauzio Genoa ( Italy )Posts: 1,930 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Curiously I suppose in my country the air pollution is caused mainly by buses, along with the private cars which, as the formers, are diesel fuelled.
    The PM2.5, which I suppose should stand for particles less than 2.5 micron ( micrometers ) in diameter, are very dangerous for your health.
    Take one millimetre and imagine such a length as one millionth of it: that's one micron.
    Those particles are invisible and, what's worse, not only to humans but, unfortunately, to the epithelium's cells of your lungs as well.
    Therefore they can't be swept away and secreted with the mucus; on the contrary they remain to line your lungs.
    Obviously, when the buses are blocked in a congested traffic, they keep chugging and coughing their polluting exhaust with no utility at all in terms of passengers' progression.
    The idea of a Bus Rapid Transit project, with one lane exclusively devoted to buses, then, could be very useful in order to cut pollution and increase average time of buses' trips.
    Is no surprise, however, that just people already accustomed to board buses welcomed such novelty; besides, students and retirees, generally seem to me the more likely to take care of both environment and their own health.
    Other people, the private cars and motor-bicycles drivers seemed to give priority to flexibility; in this regard, everyone could put forward any excuses not to ditch their own vehicles.
    Be it you have to pick up kids at school, or maybe the buses' stop are inconvenient for you to reach; whatever the pretext you never yield to dismount from motorbike or get out the car.
    Nevertheless, on behalf of your city's environment, or, more selfishly, of your own health, you should sometimes give it a try.
    You would do it to clear the roads along with your lungs.
    glad to stop strict diet, splashed in belly flop? Don't care you're not light, here on English hop !
  • filauziofilauzio Genoa ( Italy )Posts: 1,930 ✭✭✭✭✭
    I was wrong, one micron is one thousandth of a millimetre, sorry for mistake :)
    glad to stop strict diet, splashed in belly flop? Don't care you're not light, here on English hop !
  • NatashaTNatashaT Posts: 1,059 Teacher
    @filauzio That´s a very good point - different people prioritise different things. I wonder how many people would choose to use the bus instead of the car to make their cities cleaner? Let´s ask everyone from these sessions!

    @dope @april @Shiny03 @Sara @Zaki @RaraAvis @Rema @cleberamaral @aladdin
  • RaraAvisRaraAvis Posts: 101 ✭✭
    @NatashaT I don't have the car so I use the bus or other means of transport. :) But if I'm not in a hurry I prefer to walk on foot.
  • RemaRema Posts: 1,151 ✭✭✭✭✭
    I'm ready to embark to the bus to safe our planet o:) But are the people whose cars are their status symbol ready to make the same move :/
  • filauziofilauzio Genoa ( Italy )Posts: 1,930 ✭✭✭✭✭
    I also tend to prefer walking to reach my destination, @RaraAvis, but, unfortunately most of the times I'm almost late and so have to quit even just the idea. The problem with me is that I tend to cut it fine ( cut it fine informal to allow little margin of time, space, etc ) so that I always find myself in a hurry especially to commute work.

    You hit the point here, @Rema, that's exactly the case; most people don't consider their cars just a means of transportation; on the contrary they hold them as a status symbol, and cars manufacturers play their role in the matter too. Their adverts depict the cars more like a piece of jewellery than like a four-wheeled streamlined, self-moving, steely framework.
    Then they keep embellishing their pearl with any sort of vagaries, with no limits to their fantasy; I'm not up to date with what's new with cars' accessories and equipments, but I seem to have heard that nowadays you are even prevented from bumping into the next cars where parking, thanks to some kind of bumpers' sensor. This way we are also definitely deprived of the little joy of lightly scraping the other car's body. :D

    As for me, whenever I get a need to drive the ' status symbol ' I use the ones provided by a car-sharing company: have you ever considered using this system's convenience ?
    glad to stop strict diet, splashed in belly flop? Don't care you're not light, here on English hop !
  • NatashaTNatashaT Posts: 1,059 Teacher
    @RaraAvis I´m the same - buses are my primary form of transport too. And I´m forced to go by foot sometimes, especially on weekends, because the bus service isn´t that great! I think if they want everyone to use public transport, they need to provide lots of lines to make it more convenient for everyone.

    @Rema I agree, a car is definitely a status symbol to many people! Maybe if we pointed out to them that the bus is made by BMW?? :D

    @filauzio Using the bus definitely requires more planning. And if you are even a few minutes late at the start of your day, you´ll probably be really late arriving at your destination, unfortunately.

    Maybe hiring a car is a good alternative for people when they want to show off a fancy car! I remember hiring a car many many years ago, and receiving a bright yellow Holden V8 (which was extremely popular for rev heads at the time). It was´t really my style, but it sure got a lot of attention! :s
  • RaraAvisRaraAvis Posts: 101 ✭✭
    @NatashaT I can't agree with you more. I sometimes need to wait a lot of time to go to some destination because of lack of transport. And it's really not good situation. They should at least provide a good transport connection and traffic system. Of course I'm not against walking but sometimes when you have an appointment or meeting it's really irritating.
  • filauziofilauzio Genoa ( Italy )Posts: 1,930 ✭✭✭✭✭
    wow @NatashaT, you hired quite a sportive car; its performance must have been amazing: I can imagine you while, after wearing helmet and goggles, buckles up and takes off, darting along the road, catching up with, dodging and surpassing any other vehicle in front of you. :D
    However, my suggestion was to take advantage of shared cars, not in order to show off, but rather as a trade-off between owning your own car and sharing a common one with others.
    This could be useful if you don't need a car on daily basis, but only once a week or occasionally.
    This way you could save on insurance and maintenance expenses which remain under the company's care.
    glad to stop strict diet, splashed in belly flop? Don't care you're not light, here on English hop !
  • Shiny03Shiny03 Posts: 2,882 ✭✭✭✭✭
    I prefer taking public transport, but not because of out of economic action. It's just I am too lazy to drive on my own. I mean it's good to enjoy someone drives me home or to any destination, even I am not a celebrity who is so rich to hire her own private driver. Besides, I don't have to worry about driving after drinking.

    However, in my opinion, the most efficient way to reduce air pollution is to stop using fossil fuel forever or anything that would spew out exhaust. By the way, I don't think to plant street trees can save our cities because the problem of proportion. If we really want to clean the cities, we have to build another amazon in our nation. Am I too pessimistic?
  • NatashaTNatashaT Posts: 1,059 Teacher
    @filauzio yes, your suggestion makes more sense! :D Car sharing would be a better way to still have the convenience of a car when you need it, but reduce the number of cars on the road for everyday trips, like going to work or school.

    @Shiny03 maybe we need to promote these types of benefits of public transport more? Maybe just environmental benefits aren´t enough to convince people to change their habits.

    I don´t think that the trees will solve all the pollution either, because as you said, there´s not enough trees to match the level of pollution in big cities. But is it enough if they make it a little better, at least?
  • filauziofilauzio Genoa ( Italy )Posts: 1,930 ✭✭✭✭✭
    @Shiny03 wrote:

    ' ... I prefer taking public transport, but not because of out of economic action. It's just I am too lazy to drive on my own. I mean it's good to enjoy someone drives me home or to any destination, even I am not a celebrity who is so rich to hire her own private driver.. '

    I agree, but, let me cast a certainty here... you are a LEO Forum celebrity, aren't you ? :)

    I also agree that planting trees to make up for traffic air pollution isn't an effective way to clean our fouled cities' air; to me is just a way, for council, to wash their own fouled conscience. We need to replace fossil fuel powered cars with electric powered ones.
    However, I'm afraid, this way we all would face another apparently unsurmountable problem: having got just one socket, which one would you give recharging priority between your car and your phone ? :D
    glad to stop strict diet, splashed in belly flop? Don't care you're not light, here on English hop !
  • aprilapril Moderator Posts: 10,883 mod
    edited August 2017
    I walk most of the time but fortunately I don't have to go too far in my daily life.
    Sometimes I take a bike and the other time I use public transport.
    But I'll take my car if there is no other choice.
    I am aware about the danger of polution etc and I'll try to contribute in keeping our world safe and nice for everbody.
    The only thing I can do at this moment is keep it moderate in everything I do.
    Hope it'll help, a little.
    Post edited by april on
  • NatashaTNatashaT Posts: 1,059 Teacher
    @filauzio we might see a lot more people take the bus if they have to choose between recharging their phone and their car! :D
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