City environment degrading, air pollution increasing: CSIR-NEERI

Source: The Hitavada      Date: 06 Oct 2018 13:07:20


Double trouble: Braving thick dust on bad roads, commuters have nothing but luck to curse. 

(Pic by Satish Raut)

Special Correspondent,

Submitting the environment status report to NMC, CSIR-NEERI suggests various measures to the civic body to curb potential threats to environment

For Nagpurians, who are already experiencing a bumpy ride on roads, the latest findings on environment by CSIR-NEERI will come as a shocker. For, construction and developmental activities, including cement roads, flyovers and Nagpur Metro Rail works, have increased air pollution in the Orange City.

The shocking revelation is made in the latest environmental status report 2017-18 prepared by CSIR- National Environmental Engineering Research Institute (NEERI). The report was submitted to general body of Nagpur Municipal Corporation (NMC) recently. 

According to the report, during last 5 years, due to developmental activities, the environment across the city is getting degraded due to increasing level of pollutant build up from several emission sources. A team of NEERI monitored air pollution as per Central Pollution Control Board protocol at 10 sites covering various activities in the city. It found that the average PM10 concentration has exceeded the limit of 100 mg/m3 at nine places - Maskasath, Hingna, Buldi, Manewada, Shankar Nagar, Mankapur, Ashi Nagar, and Pipla locations while one location was within city limits.

The average PM2.5 concentrations during winter season at monitoring station were observed to be below the permissible limit of 60 mg/m3 at six sites, while at four sites- Maskasath, Manewada, Buldi and Mankapur, the PM 2.5 concentrations exceeded the permissible limits. The average level of pollutants depicts that occasional peak of PM10, PM 2.5, NO2, SO2, and NH3 concentration for 24 hours averaging within the city limit. The heavy metal Arsenic level was found to be below the standard at all the monitored sites; however, metals like Lead, and Nickel were found to be exceeding the standard at Manewada.

 The report stated that busy urban areas with commercial activities, which give rise to pollution from area sources, surround city. Most of the hotels and restaurants are spread in the city area. NEERI suggested that to frame a policy of restricted permits for new installation that could use cleaner fuels and proper pollution control measures.

The demolition and construction activities of Metro and Cement roads along with congestion and improvement of vehicles, mainly commuter was observed on all the roads. The report suggested for strict enforcement of regulators and also to divert the traffic of heavy vehicles from alternative routes. Report also recommended for hotels and restaurants to use cleaner fuels such as LPG and improved cook stove. It also suggested to prohibit the use of open chullah and burning of dry leaves around city.

NEERI has suggested that crematorium in city limits should have green belt alongside or else they could be shifted away from the residential areas. The use of briquettes rather than wood and use of electric crematoria should be promoted. It also suggested to synchronised auto traffic signal system at all the intersection around the monument for better and smooth flow of vehicles with minimum halt period.


CSIR-NEERI recommendations for improving environment

 Create green buffers along roads

Introduce wet vacuum sweeping of roads

Maintain pothole-free roads for free flow of traffic to reduce emission and dust

Install water fountains at major traffic intersection

Take steps for blacktopping or pavement of road shoulders to avoid road dust

Control dust pollution at construction sites through appropriate cover

Ensure carriage of construction material in closed vessels

Regular third party audits, green vigil team should provide feedback

Follow regulatory norms strictly for all type of constructions and demolition work