Government Launches Air Quality Warning System in Delhi to Combat Air Pollution (Download PDF)


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Union Environment Minister launched Air Quality Early Warning System for Delhi Region. System is designed w/help of American & Finnish models to predict extreme air pollution levels.

 Image of Killer Air

Image of Killer Air

Image of Killer Air

  • W/early information on bad air quality, people can be educated to get well prepared in advance.

  • There is decrease in detection of fire incidents as per satellite mapping in Haryana & Punjab.

  • Instructions are issued to monitor stubble burning in these areas on priority.

Objectives of the System

  • System is launched by Union Govt. in Delhi, keeping in view city’s deteriorating air quality. Associated website is launched along w/it.

  • System will help combat air pollution in National Capital by getting information 2 - 5 days in advance. It will give signs for necessary actions.

Image of Poisons We Inhale

Image of Poisons We Inhale

Image of Poisons We Inhale

Key Highlights of the Air Pollution System

  • System will have in-built web-based dissemination tool to inform public & enforcement agencies abt episodic high pollution events in advance.

  • Such information may be helpful for general public in planning their outdoor activities.

  • System will make it easier for govt. ‘s pollution watchdogs to alert stakeholders & general public abt air quality 48 hrs. in advance.

  • Move will give them adequate time to take precautionary measures.

  • System is jointly developed by scientists of Indian Institute of Tropical Meteorology (IITM) Pune, National Centre for Medium Range Weather Forecasting, Noida & India Meteorological Department (IMD).

  • Central Pollution Control Board has constituted 41 member-team, which will continuously monitor air pollution levels & report to board.

Air Quality Index in Delhi

  • Air Quality in New Delhi was 204 on 14th Oct. , 2018.

  • City’s air quality usually breaches ‘severe’ zone, when AQI reading shoots up to 5 times above safe limit, in November.

  • On 9th Nov. , 2017, AQI shot up to 486 on scale of 0 - 500, underscoring conditions that prompted Delhi govt. to declare public health emergency & describe Delhi as ‘gas chamber’.

Measures Taken to Reduce Air Pollution in Delhi

  • Central Pollution Control Board (CPBC) is proactively doing research in adjoining areas & sending reports of affected places to concerned dept. Govt. is taking steps to reduce emission from vehicles.

  • Delhi Govt. rolled out its emergency action plan - Graded Response Action Plan (GRAP) for 2nd year in row.

  • Plan, which was 1st implemented in 2017, aims to fight ‘very poor’ & ‘severe’ air pollution level.

  • Under emergency action plan, stringent measures will be implemented such as ban on diesel generator (DG) sets in Delhi.

  • If air quality deteriorates further & reaches ‘severe’ or ‘emergency’ categories, other stringent measures including ban on construction activities, stone crushers & hot mix plants, enhancing parking fees & rolling out odd-even road rationing scheme will be implemented.

  • Measures listed under GRAP to control ‘moderate’ & ‘poor’ levels of pollution are generally enforced in summer & monsoon months & measures to control ‘very poor’ & ‘severe’ categories of pollution will be enforced from 15th Oct. to 15th March.

  • Move comes at time when city has encountered 9 days of ‘poor’ air quality in 1st 2 weeks of October.

  • In November 2017, schools were shut when air quality turned ‘severe’ for more than week.

Background of Air Quality Index

  • In May, Delhi was declared world’s most polluted city, according to air quality data compiled by WHO for megacities w/population of 14 million or more.

  • Greater Cairo in Egypt was adjudged 2nd most polluted city, Bangladesh’s capital Dhaka was placed 3rd, Mumbai 4th & Beijing 5th.

  • New measures including installation of early warning system in capital have helped it become better equipped to fight air pollution in 2018.

- Published/Last Modified on: November 3, 2018

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