MUMBAI AIR QUALITY INDEX
- Recently, Between October 1 and 30, 66 instances of poor air quality indes (AQI) were recorded in 16 pockets across Mumbai. On some days, the city’s overall AQI readings were worse than Delhi’s.
CAUSES OF MUMBAI’S AIR POLLUTION:
- Due to a change in climatic conditions, the pattern of wind reversal is taking longer than usual, as a result of which winds have also become weaker.
- A steep temperature gradient between the city and nearby hilly regions resulted in winds from these areas moving towards Mumbai, picking up dust from major construction projects in Navi Mumbai and surrounding areas
- Other causes being climate change; road dust and its displacement; usage of unclean fuels in restaurants, dhabas, bakeries and roadside eateries; open burning of solid waste and garbage; and the industries that include those using Ready Mix Concrete (RMC) plants and casting yard plants.
- Unclean kitchens can also produce nitrogen di-oxide, carbon mono-oxide and formaldehyde in harmful concentrations.
- Open burning of solid waste and garbage and use of Ready Mix Concrete (RMC) plants and casting yard plants are among other reasons for Mumbai’s poorer air quality.
PRECAUTIONARY MEASURES FOR RESIDENTS:
- All outside physical activity should be avoided by sensitive or susceptible populations, and they should be moved inside whenever possible.
- Residents of Mumbai have been urged by SAFAR to avoid going outside in the early mornings and late at night.
- Asthmatics should carry relief medication with them at all times. When they go outside, they should put on N-95 or P-100 masks.
- To the greatest extent feasible, doors and windows should be kept shut.
- And rather than vacuuming, wet mopping should be preferred.
- The administration may also include citizen’s participation in their command-and-control system, so that they can complain by sending photographs whenever unauthorised construction or activities like garbage burning take place
STEPS TAKEN TO IMPROVE AIR QUALITY:
- The authorities must carry out widespread campaigns to raise awareness among the public on the need to cut vehicular emissions.
- The Mumbai civic body — Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) — has taken several steps to improve the city’s air quality.
- Mumbai can learn the adaptability methodologies that cities like Delhi and London have embraced in the past few decades.
- Various measures like compulsory use of 35-feet high iron sheet enclosures around construction sites and covering under-construction buildings with green cloth or jute sheets on all sides.
- The civic body is also going to operate anti-smog guns on 50 to 60 major roads.
SYLLABUS: PRELIMS, ENVIRONMENT
SOURCE: INDIAN EXPRESS