Day 73 – Q 1.Why is North India affected by worst air quality during November-December every year? Discuss the cause. What short term and long term measures can be taken to address this problem? Suggest.
1. Why is North India affected by worst air quality during November-December every year? Discuss the cause. What short term and long term measures can be taken to address this problem? Suggest.
उत्तर भारत हर साल नवंबर–दिसंबर के दौरान सबसे खराब वायु गुणवत्ता से क्यों प्रभावित होता है? कारण पर चर्चा करें। इस समस्या के समाधान के लिए क्या छोटी अवधि के और दीर्घकालिक उपाय किए जा सकते हैं? सुझाव दें।
The toxic levels of air pollution is developed North India affected by worst air quality during November-December every year creating quite a menace.
Cause of worst air quality during November-December in North India every year
- One of the main reasons of increasing air pollution levels in North India is crop burning by the farmers in these states. Farmers burn rice stubbles in Punjab, Haryana and Uttar Pradesh. It is estimated that approximately 35 million tonnes of crop are set afire by these states. The wind carries all the pollutants and dust particles, which have got locked in the air.
- Pollution caused by the traffic menace in Delhi is another reason contributing to this air pollution and smog. The Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) and the National Environmental Engineering Research Institute (NEERI) have declared vehicular emission as a major contributor to Delhi’s increasing air pollution.
- As the winter season sets in, dust particles and pollutants in the air become unable to move. Due to stagnant winds, these pollutants get locked in the air and affect weather conditions, resulting in smog.
- Another reason of air-pollution is urbanisation and over-population in the NCR region. Over-population only adds up to the various types of pollution, whether it is air pollution or noise pollution.
- Investing less on public infrastructure is another reason of air pollution. In India, investment in public transport and infrastructure is low which leads to congested roads, and hence air pollution.
- Large scale construction in Delhi-NCR is another culprit that is increasing dust and pollution in the air.
- Industrial pollution and garbage dumps are also increasing air pollution and building-up smog in the air.
- Despite the ban on cracker sales, firecrackers are used indiscriminately. It may not be the top reason for this smog, but it definitely contributed to its build up.
Short term and long term measures can be taken to address this problem
- Improving the fuel quality and engine design to easily move to Bharat Stage VI.
- Understanding the sources of the short-lived pollutants like black carbon and ozone.
- Improved cook stove technology for rural areas, diesel filters on trucks in urban areas etc
- Satellite-level data along with ground-based information to get a holistic picture of the extent of air pollution in a given region.
- Uniform and tighter emissions standards for the entire country
- Developing business model for collection, transportation and storage of agricultural residue. This will reduce open burning of agricultural residue and can instead be used as a source of energy.
- Cleaner fuels like LPG through Ujjwala Yojana.
- Implementing wall to wall paving of streets and vacuum cleaning of roads.
- Shifting freight transport from road to lower-emission modes like rail and inland waterways and coastal shipping using Sagarmala project.
- Replacing coal by solar energy.
- National emission trading schemes (ETS)
- Behavioral Change
- We can promote roads friendly bicycle to users
There is a need of holistic approach to deal with increasingly high social, economic and environmental cost of Air pollution. Formulation of “National Clean Air Mission” will be effective in this regard.