- The Centre for Science and Environment (CSE) has analyzed air quality trends with special focus on cities outside Delhi and the National Capital Region (NCR).
- The latest analysis by the has found that when pollution spikes during winter,entire northern India experiences smog episodes.
- This analysis aims to understand the synchronised pattern of pollution during winter when atmospheric changes entrap pollution across the region.
- This analysis has covered 137 continuous ambient air quality monitoring stations (CAAQMS) spread across 56 cities in the six states.
- CAAQMS facilitates in measuring a real time monitoring of Air Pollution including particulate matter, all round the year.
The northern region has been divided into five sub-regions which include:
- Punjab and Chandigarh
- NCR (includes Delhi and 26 other cities/towns that fall within NCR)
- Haryana (excluding cities already included in NCR)
- Uttar Pradesh (excluding cities in NCR)
- Rajasthan (excluding cities in NCR).
Methodology and Data:
- A huge volume of data points have been cleaned and data gaps have been addressed based on the USEPA (United States Environmental Protection Agency) method.
- Meteorological data for the analysis is sourced from the Palam weather station of the India Meteorological Department (IMD).
- Fire count data is from National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA)’s Fire Information for Resource Management System, specifically the Visible Infrared Imaging Radiometer Suite (VIIRS).
- Estimates of contribution of farm stubble fire smoke to Delhi’s air quality is sourced from the Union Ministry of Earth Science’s System of Air Quality and Weather Forecasting and Research (SAFAR).
- The analysis has put a spotlight on the cities of Punjab, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh, Rajasthan, Delhi and NCR to understand the synchronised pattern of pollution during winter when atmospheric changes entrap pollution across the region.
- It shows even smaller cities with lower annual average levels, record pollution levels that are as bad or even worse than Delhi.
SOURCE: THE HINDU,THE ECONOMIC TIMES,MINT