Visakhapatnam: Pollution in some areas of Vizag city has touched critical levels, revealed a latest study conducted by JNTU students of Kakinada. The study conducted last year checked for various pollutants in the air at industrial areas such as Visakha Steel Plant, Hindustan Ship Yard and others. High levels of pollutants were observed, more so in winter than in summer. India has 23 major cities with population over one million with pollution levels exceeding the WHO standards in most of them.
The main reason for deterioration of air quality in the cities was found to be urban air pollution due to growing number of vehicles that poses a significant threat to human health and the environment. These pollutants settle in the bronchi and lungs and cause health problems due to their miniscule size that passes through the lungs to affect other organs. Researchers selected six places in the city for getting samples to monitor the pollution levels.
Highest concentration of PM 2.5 was recorded during winter at Coromandel Fertilizers (Site 1) and Hindustan Zinc (site 4); while at HPCL (site 2) and Hindustan Shipyard (site 6), the highest concentration was recorded during summer. Highest levels of NOx were observed during winter at all four monitoring sites and lowest levels were observed during summer at all the six sites. Highest concentrations of SO2 were recorded during winter at total six sites.
However, the lowest concentrations were recorded during the summer in all the sites, according to researchers. Researchers J. Srinivas and A. V. Purushotham suggested the need to evaluate and improve air quality in the city.