DO WE NEED AN ENVIRONMENTAL REVOLUTION TO BREATHE BETTER IN INDIA?

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Understanding air pollution levels in India and how technology can help resolve some issues

As we approach the winter season, it has become a habit to hear news about ‘severe smog’ situations in New Delhi. The current incident of smog occurring in the capital city of India, is just another example of how situation can go out of hand if proctive measures aren’t taken soon. This is easier said than done. It will require a planned execution of preventive steps for a prolonged duration.

As we approach the winter season, it has become a habit to hear news about ‘severe smog’ situations in New Delhi. The current incident of smog occurring in the capital city of India, is just another example of how situation can go out of hand if proctive measures aren’t taken soon. This is easier said than done. It will require a planned execution of preventive steps for a prolonged duration.

SOURCE – FIRST POST

India and China face deadliest air pollution in the world: Study

Beijing and Delhi are two of the worst cities in terms of pollution, but on one hand, Beijing has a well-defined measure to battle the smog, Delhi is far from formalising one.

In India, rapid industrialisation and population growth have adversely affected urban climates, particularly air quality, and caused imbalances in the regional climate at large.

As per a study conducted by the World Health Organization, half of world’s 20 most polluted cities are in India. According to a recent report by the Lancet Commission on Pollution and Health, India tops the world in pollution-related deaths, accounting for 2.5 million of the total 9 million deaths attributed to pollution worldwide in 2015.

China was second on the list, with 1.8 million total fatalities due to pollution. According to the WHO, PM 2.5 levels should not exceed 25 micrograms per cubic meter over a 24-hour period and 10 micrograms per cubic meter on average over a year. But in cities like Delhi and Beijing, there are days when PM 2.5 levels surge to almost 1,000, which is so high that it’s literally off the scales of many pollution monitoring devices.

PM 2.5 refers to fine particulate matter — microscopic particles that are less than 2.5 micrometers in diameter, minuscule enough to be absorbed right into the lungs and blood. Sustained exposure to high levels of PM 2.5 can cause respiratory diseases like bronchitis, asthma and inflammation of the lungs, and even heart attacks and strokes. There are several reasons for the alarming increase in air pollution.

The total vehicles sold in India have increased by over 273 percent since 2000. The exposure to vehicle exhaust has led to a significant increase in respiratory symptoms, cancer, and lung function impairments. Unfortunately, India has yet to come out with a definite roadmap for setting emission standards throughout the country.

SOURCE – DOORDARSHAN

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