Pollution: Delhi-NCR doesn’t have adequate air quality monitoring stations, says report

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Published: October 29, 2017 10:57:10 AM

A total of 55 new stations were supposed to be set up by the end of 2017. However, as per the report, only about 10 monitoring stations have been added so far, excluding the ones set up in Delhi.

While the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) has added towns such as Alwar, Ghaziabad Bhiwadi and Noida to its daily air quality bulletin, as per the report, only 20 more stations have been activated over the past year.

A Graded Response Action Plan was set up last year in December to combat air pollution. It is a robust mechanism to measure air quality. Although almost a year has passed since the plan was put in place across NCR town, it is yet to accomplish in Haryana and Uttar Pradesh, reported the Indian Express. The Supreme Court appointed Environment Pollution (Prevention and Control) Authority (EPCA) last December and formulated the action plan that hinges on accurate air quality data from Delhi-NCR towns to suggest actions according to the concentration of pollutants. As compared to Delhi, the number of stations are way lesser in NCR towns, while several stations in Haryana and Uttar Pradesh are yet to come up, as per the report.

While the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) has added towns such as Alwar, Ghaziabad Bhiwadi and Noida to its daily air quality bulletin, as per the report, only 20 more stations have been activated over the past year. Ghaziabad has only one monitoring station so far, as per CPCB data. Whereas Gurgaon too has only one monitoring station, with the second one expected to start functioning by next week. Meanwhile, Noida continues to read air quality from only two stations.

A total of 55 new stations were supposed to be set up by the end of 2017. However, as per the report, only about 10 monitoring stations have been added so far, excluding the ones set up in Delhi.

Acknowledging the delay, EPCA member Sunita Narain was quoted as saying, “The target was to set up at least 13 monitoring stations in the NCR districts of Haryana. This has not happened because the Haryana Pollution Control Board did not have a chairperson for several months even after an NGT order laid down strict guidelines for the selection of officials for the post. Similarly, there have been delays in UP. The governments of both states have said they will be able to meet the targets in the coming months. Some of these should be functional in December.”

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