Ombudswoman investigates the state of environment and public health protection measures after the fire in Jakuševec
Foto: HINA/ Lana SLIVAR DOMINIĆ/ ml
Due to the fire outbreak in Jakuševec, Zagreb, on 24 July 2019, the Ombudswoman has initiated a proceeding requesting from the State Inspectorate, Ministry of the Interior, Ministry for the Environmental Protection and Energy, the City of Zagreb, Zagreb Holding, Public Health Institute dr. Andrija Štampar and the Croatian Meteorological and Hydrological Service, a declaration of its causes, circumstances and consequences.
Namely, the fire outbreak opened a question of the state of environmental protection, that is, of monitoring the quality of air and the garbage management but also of the public health protection and the right to healthy living. Those were the reasons why she has requested data on the state, maintenance and proper operation of the State control stations for measuring the quality of air in different parts of Zagreb. It is important to know the data on registered values of all polluting substance emissions in the air, particularly of those floating in the air, from the moment of the fire outbreak until its final extinguishing and its aftermath, which might be harmful for health and on which the citizens must be timely and fully informed. Hence, it is important to know what measures is being undertaken for protection and control of the state of water and soil in relation to the fire consequences.
It is worthy of reminding that during the big fire out broken two years ago at the garbage storage Karepovac, near Split, the control measurement stations in Karepovac, Split, Kaštela and Solin at that time registered a multiple increase of the floating particles values and sulphureted hydrogen on which the citizens were not properly informed. The World Health Organisation recently particularly warns on the linkage between air pollution and premature deaths, caused by heart attacks and stroke, pulmonary disease and cancer. Even short exposure as well as long lasting exposure to air pollution might affect children and adults, decreasing their pulmonary functions, causing respiratory tract infections, asthma and other health problems. Most dangerous ones, however, are the floating particles, nitrogen dioxide and ground-level ozone.
Ombudswoman has been informing the Croatian parliament on the environmental protection and the right to healthy living since 2013; you may find more in the 2018 Annual report.
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