Three new air quality monitoring stations to be operational today
NEW DELHI: To control and monitor the deteriorating air quality in the national Capital, the Delhi government is all set to launch three new air quality monitoring stations by this Friday.
With 17 others to follow by October 15, the readings of the capital's air quality could undergo a comprehensive change, government officials said.
The city, so far, has 23 stations to assess air pollution and levels of hazardous particle in the environment.
However, the Delhi government's Environment department, along with the Delhi Pollution Control Committee (DPCC), made plans to strengthen the monitoring network, with the addition of 20 more air quality monitoring stations in the city.
These three new stations will begin functioning at Karni Singh Shooting Range, Major Dhyan Chand International Stadium and Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium.
The station at JLN Stadium began operations on Thursday, as it is the venue for the FIFA Under-17 World Cup, beginning from October 6.
According to sources, Delhi the government has launched these stations, priority keeping in mind the FIFA matches.
The remaining 17 stations will cover areas such as Mundka, Narela, Bawana and Dwarka, along with urban villages in Masoodpur and Dayalpur, and industrial centres like Najafgarh and Okhla.
"The monitoring stations will give readings for the presence of PM 2.5, or respirable pollutants, and PM10, along with six other pollutants such as ozone and sulphur dioxide." said a senior official.
He added that the real-time data will be available on the DPCC website.
DPCC officials believe that by introducing these new stations, a major change would take place in air quality monitoring.
This time, the new stations will allow the Environment department to cover a wide-range of locations, which were not monitored earlier.
After instructions from Delhi Environment minister Imran Hussain, the department has worked on these stations on priority basis, asserted the official.
Earlier, Lieutenant Governor Anil Baijal also had directed that these stations should be operational before October 15.
The existing 23 stations are monitored by DPCC, the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) and the Union Ministry of Earth Sciences' System of Air Quality and Weather Forecasting Research (SAFAR).
Meanwhile, SAFAR on Wednesday observed that the air quality of Delhi has become "poor" and the situation could further deteriorate in the next few days.
As per the central agency, which monitors air pollution, the day-long average of PM 2.5 and PM 10 – which are ultrafine particulates – were 178 and 94 micrograms per cubic metre (ug/m3).
Meanwhile, the air quality index (AQI) of the CPCB also showed Delhi's air quality as being "poor".
A poor AQI essentially means that people will have breathing discomfort on prolonged exposure to such air. On further dip in air quality, AQI will turn "very poor" and "severe".