Weather worsens air quality in city during Deepavali

Weather worsens air quality in city during Deepavali

Air pollution levels increased by 46.8% this Deepavali season in the city.

Besides crackers, the weather too contributed to increasing air pollution, said Lakshman, Karnataka State Pollution Control Board (KSPCB) chairman.

This year, KSPCB monitored the ambient air quality by using manual monitoring equipment at 13 locations and using continuous ambient air quality monitoring systems at five locations. The staffers compared air pollution levels of October 17 with that of October 18, 19 and 20. The levels of sulphur dioxide (SO2), nitrogen dioxide (NO2) and fine particulate matter (PM10) were measured.

Overall, the data from all 13 manual stations showed that PM10 levels increased to 122.4 ug/m3 against the standard of 100 ug/m3.

Though people are becoming aware of the ill effects of burning crackers, a lot still needs to be done, Lakshman said. There has been a marginal increase in air pollution compared to 2016 since the weather was dry this year, unlike last year when it rained.

“Though the average sale of crackers decreased, air pollution increased since the relative humidity was high, leading to inversion effect,” Lakshman said.

Another official said the haze in the early mornings and night hours during the three days of the festival was smog, which is a mix of dust and pollution and is harmful.

Indira Gandhi Institute of Child Health recorded the highest increase in air pollution of 168.3% with a PM10 of 110, followed by Teri Office, Domlur with 103%. At ITPL Whitefield Industrial Area there was a 51% increase in air pollution.

Rail Wheel Factory in Yelahanka saw a 7.9% rise in pollution levels, Urban Eco Space in Peenya saw a 44.2% rise, Swan Silk Ltd in Peenya Industrial area recorded an increase 26.5%, Central Silk Board saw a 19.5% increase and AMCO Batteries saw a 69.4% increase.

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