Ever wondered what that warning ‘palenie zabija’ on the cigarette packets actually means? It’s ambiguous – either ‘smoking kills’, or ‘smoking is killing’. There’s no such ambiguity with Kraków’s air quality – it is killing you with every breath you take.
The Mayor of Kraków, acting one would assume rightly in the economic interests of the city, has questioned an English-language campaign highlighting the severe dangers of our polluted air.
Mayor Jacek Majchrowski supported the principle of the Krakowski Alarm Smogowy campaign, but said that the organisation could do more of a service to the city by trying to persuade people to switch to smokeless fuel systems. He said that putting off tourists was in nobody’s interests, and he is pushing the Małopolska authorities to act in haste to ban dirty heating systems.
With the utmost respect to the office of the Mayor of Kraków, a city which is quite clearly the beating heart of Poland if not the world, killing tourists is not in the city’s interests either.
We need to clean up the air in Kraków. If you live here, you smoke – whether you like it or not. Krakowski Alarm Smogowy’s campaign is doing what the natural course of politics cannot, by raising awarness of a deadly and serious issue, and hopefully forcing change based not on economics but on people. Sign their petition now, and make a difference. Or, just accept the concept of collateral damage, and hope it’s not you.
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